Bihar gov blames Centre for delay in road construction

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Patna, Mar 13(UNI) The Bihar government today blamed the Centre for the delay in road construction, saying it was maintaining an ''apathetic attitude'' in carrying forward the work.

Replying to a debate on the budgetary demands for the road construction department in the Assembly, Bihar road construction minister Nand Kishore Yadav said that the bitumen crisis had resulted in the delay.

Referring to the letter written by the Indian Oil Corporation regarding non-supply of bitumen and its outlets going dry in the peak season, Mr Yadav said the IOC authorities in their letter had mentioned that the Western railway and the railway headquarters was not providing the racks for transportation of the ingredient.

He said following the Centre's attitude, the state government had relaxed the rules for purchase of bitumen and allowed the contractors to buy it from other states in huge bulk.

Mr Yadav said the construction work of the state highways by the central agencies, namely IRCON and the CPWD, was being carried out very slowly and the state government had directed both the agencies to complete the work within the stipulated period or their tenders would be scrapped.

The Minister informed the members that 11 state highways would be constructed with the help of Asian Development Bank while the state government would construct two other state highways on its own.

In addition to this, 15 new state highways would be constructed he said adding that the ADB had agreed to help in the project.

Highlighting the projects of the government, he said, the Nitish Kumar government was working on the plan for conversion of the National Highways into four lanes, state highways into two lane and the district roads into the intermediary roads.

Mr Yadav pointed out that the state government was working on the plan for construction of roads along the bank of river Ganges in the state capital and ILFS had been asked to prepare a report within six months.

Bihar government was also constructing bridges on several rivers to provide better connectivity within the state.

Later the House passed the budgetary demands for road construction department.

UNI RS KK RL GC1924

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