Centre clears Rs 3693 cr for 703 roads, 73 bridges in J&K

Gopal Sharma
JAMMU, June 13: The Union Government today cleared a whopping  Rs 3693.49 crore funds for more than 700 roads and a large number of new bridge projects in Jammu and Kashmir State.
Official sources told the Excelsior that Union Ministry of Rural Development has cleared 703 roads and 73 new bridges for J&K State under Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojna.  A total of 4821.31 kms roads and 3084 meter bridges in length,  would be constructed during the year 2018-2019 in the State.
Out of the total amount, Rs 369.35 cr would be the State share, while funds to the tune of Rs 1728. 33 crore will be spent on up-gradation of the existing State roads. A total road length of 1870 kms would be covered under 257 upgradation road works, sources added.
An official letter of the Union Ministry of Rural Development conveying approval of the funds was received by the Administrative Secretary Works, J&K, today.
The sources said that the Union Ministry has also directed to the State R&B authorities that it should propose 16.94 Km using new materials/ IRC accredited materials as per new technology initiative guidelines in next batch of  proposal to compensate this balance length.
“State should get  at least one sample DPR of each of the new technology adopted in this batch before tendering of works. Moreover, State should also enter into MoU  between NRRDA, Technology Provider and SRRDA for the roads sanctioned using new materials/IRC accredited materials as per new technology initiative guidelines,”  the sources added.
The MoRD also made it clear to the State that the design of bridges should be done based on hydraulic particulars  and soil exploration test results and if required, changes in BOQs should be carried out before according technical sanctions. All such details should be shared with NRRDA/ Ministry before tendering.
Meanwhile, Minister for Public Works and Culture, Naeem Akhtar  said that  Union Ministry of Rural Development has approved projects worth more than Rs 3324 crore under PMGSY  that will be taken up in J&K during this fiscal.
He claimed that under PMGSY Phase 1, the Union Ministry has sanctioned construction of 703 roads and 73 bridges worth Rs 3324.14 crores including macadamisation of new 2752. 57 kilometres and upgrading of 1870 km road length in different parts of the State under the Centrally Sponsored Scheme.
“ In a major boost for road connectivity in Jammu and Kashmir, the Ministry has also approved construction of 73 long span bridges with length of 3084 metres. In total, 4821 km road length including new ones and those at different stages of construction have been approved by the Ministry which will connect 39 inhabitations with mainland,” the Minister added.
“This feat has become possible with strenuous efforts of  Development Commissioner, Chief Engineers, other officers of the Public Works and other allied departments who ensured that the recommendations sent to the Centre meet all the requirements under the PMGSY. The State Government is also grateful to the Centre for sanctioning record number of projects that will boost the developmental works in the State,” Naeem said.
The Minister further said that new projects sanctioned under PMGSY will boost the developmental agenda of the State Government spearheaded by the Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti. He claimed that these connectivity projects will erase the geographical boundaries between people living in far flung areas of the State and open up new channels of  progress and economic prosperity.