Cen­tral Govt. plans to bol­ster north east high­ways

Commercial Vehicle - - CV MONITOR / NEWS -

The Min­istry of Road Trans­port and High­ways is set to up­grade 10,100 km of high­ways in the North East. The re­gion, still un­der­de­vel­oped in terms of road con­nec­tiv­ity, is ex­pect­ing greater traf­fic and ease of trans­port through the up­grade.

Among the ar­eas to re­ceive the high­est pri­or­ity is land-locked Arunachal Pradesh which also bor­ders China. The state, which shares 1,030 km of bor­der with China will have 2,770 km of roads be­ing built by the Bor­der Roads Or­gan­i­sa­tion (BRO). In ad­di­tion to Arunachal Pradesh, the Min­istry has also com­menced work on the ex­ten­sion and widen­ing of NH44. The high­way will now be ex­tended to the In­dia-Bangladesh bor­der town Sab­room in Tripura, al­low­ing for bet­ter ac­cess to the Chit­tagong port, which is lo­cated 75 km away from Sab­room. Ad­di­tion­ally, work for the con­struc­tion of a 150 m long bridge over Feni river in the bor­der town is on to pro­vide bet­ter ac­cess to the port. But ex­perts be­lieve that these projects will not be easy to ex­e­cute given top­graph­i­cal con­straints. As such, costs are expected to ex­ceed the tra­di­tional yard­stick of Rs 3.5 crore needed to be in­vested per km of road.

The cen­tral gov­ern­ment is mulling a slew of mea­sures to ex­pe­dite the de­vel­op­ment of these in­fra­struc­ture projects. They in­clude the ap­point­ment of an ad­di­tional di­rec­tor gen­eral with greater tech­ni­cal knowl­edge and fi­nan­cial pow­ers. The min­istry is also look­ing at in­creas­ing the num­ber of chief en­gi­neers em­ployed with the BRO.

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