Ranchi: Jan 05, 2011: The condition of national highways, particularly those passing through the State of Jharkhand, and other major roads in the State, including those in Left Wing Extremism affected areas, is all set to be improved; according to an official information.
Mr. Kamal Nath, the Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways, shared this information to Jharkhand’s rajya sabha member Mr. Parimal Nathwani during a one on one discussion about the development of roads in Jharkhand. Mr. Nathwani is always on look out to raise an issue of the State’s development in any forum he gets an opportunity to represent.
There are twelve numbers of national highways in Jharkhand with total length of 1844.07 kilometers. Under national highway ongoing works as on November 30, 2010, as many as 82 numbers of works amounting to Rs. 530.53 crore were in progress in Jharkhand; in accordance with the information Mr. Nath gave to Mr. Nathwani. The nature of works include widening and strengthening, improvement of riding quality, construction of major and minor bridges; and culverts, etc.
All the national highways in Jharkhand, except NH-80 are included for two/four laning, either under National Highway Development Projects (NHDP) or under Road Requirement Plan (RRP) for development of National highways in Left Wing Extremism (LWE) areas in Jharkhand.
The widening of two-lanes of length of 73 kilometers of NH-80 is included in the current annual plan 2010-11; the approximate cost of which is about Rs. 57.23 crore. A patch of length of 64 kilometers of NH-80 (From 197 kilometers to 260 kilometers including Sahebganj Bye Pass) for widening to two lane itself would cost Rs. 50 crore. There is also a portion of eight kilometers (Kilometers 205,206 and 220 to 225) in NH-80 taken up for improvement of riding quality (IRQP) project at a cost of Rs. 4.50 crore in the current plan 2010-11.
Further, 22.9 kilometer length for widening to 2-lane and strengthening from kilometer 261 to 282.9 of NH-80 has been taken up under special projects in Jharkhand through budgetary provision in the annual plan. Estimate for an amount of Rs. 52.81 crore was sanctioned by the ministry under Mr. Kamal Nath in June 2010. Apart from this, the construction works proposed under annual plan 2010-11 for other national highways include Gumla Bye Pass on NH No. 23 and 78 at a cost of Rs. 20 crore.
For development of State Roads in LWE affected areas, total 248 kilometers of state roads have been identified in Latehar, Palamu, Chatra, Lohardaga, Gumla, Garlwa, Hazaribau and East Singhbhum under RRP. The State government was to provide the cost estimates to the centre for the same. Apart from this, 534.16 kilometer lengths of different national highways will also be developed under RRP. These works will be mainly in Chatra, Garhwa, Latehar, Lohardaga and West Singhbhum districts. Total 431.79 kilometers’ lengths have been identified on different national highways passing through the LWE areas under RRP for widening and strengthening at a total cost of Rs. 528.87 crore.
As many as twelve projects under NHDP are also at various stages of progress in Jharkhand as of now. These works are mainly of 4-laning and 6-laning and 2-lane plus paving of shoulders. These works involve portions of national highways No. 33, No. 2, No. 75, No. 23, No. 6 and No. 32.
Under other centrally sponsored works in Jharkhand, total 23 Nos. of works amounting to Rs. 266.73 crore have been sanctioned so far in CRF (Central Road Fund) in Jharkhand. Out of this, eight Nos. of works have been completed and 15 are in progress. These completed works are mainly in Dhanbad, Khunti, Hazaribag,
Chaibasa, Ranchi, Daltoganj and Deoghar divisions.
The Government of Jharkhand has recommended 03 road works in Bokaro District widening and strengthening for in-principle approval under Economic Importance scheme. The centre has examined the recommendation and the same will be considered as per CRF (State Roads) Rules, 2007. According to rule 7(2) of these rules only the projects on State Highways and Major District Roads (MDR) are considered as the projects of economic importance.
In nutshell, both Centre and the State have exhibited wisdom in focusing on this vital aspect of infrastructure i.e. the development of roads which would add a plus point for attracting investors and surely would lead to diversified growth of the State; according to Mr. Nathwani.