rediff.com

NewsApp (Free)

Read news as it happens
Download NewsApp

Available on  

Rediff News  All News 
Rediff.com  » Business » Highways: At less than 9 km a day, it is still in slow lane

Highways: At less than 9 km a day, it is still in slow lane

Last updated on: October 18, 2011 11:42 IST

Highways: At less than 9 km a day, it is still in slow lane

     Next

Next
Mihir Mishra in New Delhi

The 20-km a day target for highway construction remains a distant dream for the government with highway construction recording only 8.75 km a day progress in construction in the current fiscal.

The National Highways Authority of India and the road transport ministry together have constructed 1,314 km of highways in the current financial year till August 31.

Road construction at this pace is an improvement from eight km a day constructed in 2010-11.

Click NEXT to read further. . .


Image: Mumbai-Pune Expressway.

     Next

Highways: At less than 9 km a day, it is still in slow lane

Prev     Next
Prev

Next

"Our construction activity is badly hit during the monsoon months.

"If we have constructed this much during the first four months (including the monsoon months) of the fiscal, we will definitely be able to construct much more," said a senior ministry official, who did not want to be named.

Highway construction in the last financial year was 2,920 km, which was an improvement from 2,738 km in 2009-10.

The highway construction target for the current year has been set at 3,570 km -- 2,500 km for NHAI and 1,070 km for the road transport ministry.

Click NEXT to read further. . .


Image: A woman works at a road construction site.
Photographs: Jayanta Dey/Reuters
Prev     Next

Highways: At less than 9 km a day, it is still in slow lane

Prev     Next
Prev

Next

Of the target, the highways ministry has completed the constructed of 624 km and NHAI has been able to complete 690 km.

NHAI constructs roads under the National Highways Development Programme, whereas the road transport ministry constructs roads through Border Roads Organisation and state public welfare departments.

NHAI has announced it will award 59 projects covering 7,994 km with a total cost of around Rs 60,000 crore (Rs 600 billion) -- much less compared to the target of 96 projects covering 12,000 km worth Rs 100,000 crore (Rs 1,000 billion) for the last financial year, when Kamal Nath was at the helm.

Click NEXT to read further. . .



Prev     Next

Highways: At less than 9 km a day, it is still in slow lane

Prev     Next
Prev

Next

However, NHAI had earlier conveyed to the government that it would exceed the target and award projects worth 9,000 km in the current fiscal.

In mid-2009, United Progressive alliance-II came to power and Nath was made the road transport minister.

He had set a target to build 20 km a day, increasing it from the earlier six km a day in 2008-09.

During his tenure, Nath had come up with project plans for two financial years and had set a target of awarding a little over 200 projects worth Rs 200,000 crore (Rs 2,000 billion).

Click NEXT to read further. . .



Prev     Next

Highways: At less than 9 km a day, it is still in slow lane

Prev     More
Prev

More

The award of road projects had slowed down during UPA-I. While the economic slowdown and the ensuing liquidity crunch had affected the performance keeping companies away, T R Baalu's performance as the road transport minister was also dissatisfactory.

The NHAI also plans to raise Rs 10,000 crore (Rs 100 billion) through tax-free infrastructure bonds from the market to fund their road construction plan.

Raising funds is a part of NHAI's financial plan to raise Rs 63,000 crore (Rs 630 billion) in the next 20 years.


Image: Ahmedabad Vadodara Expressway.

Prev     More
Source: