Centre to spend Rs 2.35 lakh cr on various road widening works

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Shirdi, Jul 24 (UNI) Union Minister of State for Road Transport and Highways K H Muniappa today said the Central Government will spend Rs 2.35 lakh crore on the various road widening works, which will be completed by December 2012.

Talking to reporters at Kopargaon, near here, Mr Muniappa said there are 66,500 km of national highways in the country. Of which, 50,000 km of roads are currently being widened into four, six and eight-lanes. This work will be completed by December 2012.

He said the length of all roads falling under Golden Quatrilateral scheme has been extended to 6,500 km from 5,846 km.

The work on the first phase is nearing end. The Centre had decided to develop all the state highways under the scheme, he informed.

He said the work on roads linking Srinagar to Kanyakumari and Salem to Porbandar is underway and will be completed by 2010.

National Highways Authority has granted its sanction for this work and the works will be completed on built, operate and transfer (BOT) basis. For this, the contract will be awarded by December-end, the Minister said.

Mr Muniappa said in the next five-year plan, the Centre government has decided to develop village roads and arterial roads.

He said after the completion of road-widening works of national highways, there will be a cut of 30 per cent in petrol and diesel expenditure. It will also increase the vehicle's efficiency by another 10 years.

Earlier, the Minister visited the Saibaba Temple here and later felicitated the students of Kopargaon Taluka Education Society.

Mr Muniappa was also felicitated for giving a grant of Rs 22 crore for construction of three bridges over the Godavari river in Kopargaon taluka.

UNI XR SSS BDP KN2157

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