Highway projects on fast track! Nitin Gadkari reviews around 500 road projects worth Rs 3 lakh crore

Devanjana Nag

With a view to fast track highway projects across the country, Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari is reviewing several road projects in a two-day marathon meet! According to a press release issued by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, Gadkari is reviewing all on-going projects of the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI)/Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH), worth Rs 3 lakh crore on Thursday and Friday. The review meeting is being held at Manesar near Gurugram, in Haryana and will also be attended by the Minister of State for Road Transport and Highways, V.K. Singh.

On the first day, the minister reviewed the projects of the South Zone, which covers the states of Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Telengana, Andhra Pradesh and Pondicherry as well as the Central Zone, which covers the states of Rajasthan, Gujarat, Chhattisgarh, and Madhya Pradesh. While on the second day, the minister will review the projects of Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Odisha, Jharkhand, Bihar, and West Bengal. This will be followed by the states of Punjab, Uttarakhand, Maharashtra, Goa, Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh. The press release stated that the issues related to the projects of North-Eastern states as well as NHIDCL have already been reviewed in a separate meeting, which was conducted on 7 January 2020 at New Delhi.

During the meeting, the progress of around 500 projects especially stuck or delayed projects will be taken up by the minister. According to the ministry, these projects involve a cost of around Rs 3 lakh crore. The review meeting will also being attended by various stakeholders numbering about 600 concessionaries, bankers, contractors, concerned officials of union government and its departments, organizations, state PWD departments, state NH division, etc. The ministry believes that the meeting is an important platform for ironing out issues as well as for exploring the way forward for pending projects, thereby helping in expediting the implementation.