Rajasthan expresses dissatisfaction over Centre's funding

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Jaipur, Oct 22: The Rajasthan Government has expressed dissatisfaction over the quantum of funds provided by the Centre to the state for strengthening the road network during past four years.

Addressing a press conference here today, state Public Works Department (PWD) Minister Rajendra Singh Rathore said that the state government had spent over Rs 11,000 crore on various road network related projects during the past 4 years but had so far got only around Rs 4,000 crore from the Centre, much less than the requirement of the state.

Mr Rathore said that Rajasthan had set many landmarks in the implementation of various projects aiming at strengthening of road network and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh as well as the Planning Commission had even praised Rajasthan's achievements in this sector. Despite this, the Centre had not bothered much for the state in extending its cooperation.

Finance Minister P Chidambaram had announced the conversion of existing Delhi/Jaipur Highway into express highway in his budget speech but the announcement was not met with due action for implementation by the Centre. The widening of this highway into six lane path had also been due since 2006 but New Delhi had not taken steps to implement the project.

The Minister said that the Centre had also remained non- cooperative over the state government's demand of funds for maintenance of rain affected roads. Against the state government's demand of around Rs 280 crore during past two years, the state got only Rs 11 crore for the purpose, Mr Rathore observed.
Mr Rathore said the present government had effected a three fold rise in the budget allocation for roads in the state as compared to the previous Congress-led Gehlot Government. He said the Vasundhara Raje government stood first in the country in implementation of the Prime Minister Rural Raods project and set a new record by increasing national highways network in the state by 990 Kms during its regime.

He said the state had laid roads ONA stretch of around 25,900 Kms under the Prime Minister Rural Roads Project against this national figure of around 1.35 lakh Kms during four years.

He said the Rajasthan Government had earned praise from the Planning Commission for achieving high quality road works at the lowest possible cost in the country.

Mr Rathore said the state had also been implementing an ambitious Rs 1500 crore Mega Highway project involving international standard two laning work along 1053-Kms-long four state highways.

UNI

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