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PM promises bounty for "roads of growth"

Thursday 6 April 2006

Bharat Nirman: Govt investing Rs 1,80,000 cr on the road network, besides funds for improving highways

Panipat, april 5: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today said his government was investing Rs 1,80,000 crore for building highways and road network as part of efforts to develop world-class infrastructure.

Laying the foundation stone of the Rs 325-crore elevated highway project here, he said under the ambitious Rs 1,74,000-crore Bharat Nirman Programme, the UPA government aims to provide every village with well laid roads, telephone, electricity and drinking water by 2009.

??I have repeatedly said our country needs world-class infrastructure. We have set for ourselves a growth target of 8 to 10 per cent over the coming years,’’ he said. Manmohan said to achieve this growth rate, the country would need massive investments in basic infrastructure such as roads, ports, telecom, electricity and airports.

Among the various initiatives to provide international standard infrastructural facilities in the country, the Prime Minister said the Centre was investing Rs 1,80,000 crore on the road network, besides providing funds to state governments to improve state highways and other roads.

He said in the last one year, the government had awarded contracts for four-laning of nearly 5,500 km of national highways, which was the highest ever since the start of the National Highways Development programme.

The PM said the UPA government was giving the highest priority to roads, schools and hospitals to provide basic facilities in rural areas.

??Road connects villages to towns and towns to big cities and brings jobs closer to our homes,’’ Manmohan said, adding high quality roads also encourage setting up of new industries and creating new income opportunities.

??Our government has given highest priority for development of national highways and rural roads,’’ he said.

Lauding Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda for initiating the elevated highway project at Panipat, he said it would lead to overall development of the city and its adjoining areas and would boost the economy of the region.

The Prime Minister, who spoke in Hindi, said completion of the project will help decongest Panipat city as the long distance traffic will pass unhindered on the elevated highway and local vehicles will move safely at ground level without being affected by heavy traffic.

Manmohan said this will also reduce travel time from Delhi and the region around it, besides benefitting Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab and other states. He said the Haryana government was giving a lot of priority to roads and infrastructure development and about 300 km of national highways are being taken up for widening to four and six lanes.

The Prime Minister said the government has already begun preparatory work for the Delhi-Hissar portion of NH-10 going via Rohtak and would be awarding contract by the year-end. In about three years, people from Hissar and Rohtak will be able to travel comfortably on a world-class road to Delhi.

See online : The Indian Express

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