2,245 km of rural roads to be upgraded

December 11, 2013


Union Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh on Monday wrote to Chief Minister Siddaramaiah conveying the decision of the empowered committee<br /><br />
to accept the State’s proposal. File Photo
Union Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh on Monday wrote to Chief Minister Siddaramaiah conveying the decision of the empowered committee to accept the State’s proposal. File Photo
Jairam Ramesh
Jairam Ramesh

Rural roads in the State are set to get further strengthened with the Union Ministry of Rural Development on Monday according conditional clearance for upgrading 2,245 km of rural roads at a cost of Rs. 1,071 crore under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) II.

Union Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh on Monday wrote to Chief Minister Siddaramaiah conveying the decision of the empowered committee to accept the State’s proposal. He said, “I would request you to direct the department concerned to expeditiously send the compliance report on the observations of the committee to the Ministry to enable us to issue the formal clearance for the proposal soon.”

Meanwhile, the Ministry conveyed the final sanction for balance work under PMGSY I for 28 road and 39 bridge projects. The empowered committee asked the State government to correct the proposal module and upload it on Online Management, Monitoring and Accounting System (OMMAS) with regard to detailed reports of these projects.

Scaled downWhile the State had sought PMGSY funding for upgrading 2,550 km rural roads with 360 roadwork at a cost of Rs. 1,217.77 crore, the committee said that the State’s entitlement under PMGSY II was limited to 2,245 km only. It asked the State to limit the size of the proposal within the entitlement based on the utility value of the roads. It said that the balance proposals beyond the limit could be kept in the detailed project reports bank and may be taken up once a policy decision on the matter is taken by the Ministry.

ComplianceBefore issuing the final clearance, the State government should adhere to PMGSY II guidelines regarding detailed project reports, the committee said. The roads proposed for upgrade should be “through routes” and major rural link roads leading to growth centres or rural hubs. Such roads, after upgrade, should be declared as Major District Roads.

It said that proposals for carriageway width less than 3.75 m may not qualify under PMGSY II while proposals for carriageways with width more than 5.5 m may have to be funded by the State government on pro-rata basis. On fulfilling these conditions, the Ministry would accord final clearance for the proposals, the committee said.


175 kilometer road to be constructed in Ludhiana district

December 5, 2013

Vaivasvat Venkat,TNN |

LUDHIANA: The central government will be constructing 175 kilometres of roads in three rural assembly segments of Dakha, Jagaraon and Gill. The proposal was prepared and submitted to the state government by the local MP and the Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari to be forwarded to the government of India.

A spokesman for Tewari disclosed here that the roads will be constructed under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana in the three constituencies. He said, Tewari has personally pursued the proposal and submitted it to the state government for forwarding it to the government of India.

The entire money is provided by the government of India for the rural connectivity. So far the government of India has already provided Rs 100 crores to the state government for the construction of the rural roads in Ludhiana district.

The work on the project is expected to start soon with Tewari personally pursuing the project with the union rural development ministry. Tewari has assured that he will ensure that the project is approved at the earliest and the work is started on these roads in the current financial year only.



Centre to approve more rural roads by FY15

December 2, 2013

Jaideep Deogharia, TNN

RANCHI: The central team of rural development department expressed satisfaction with Jharkhand over the performance of Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) during the regional review meeting of east zone that started here on Friday. The team has agreed to sanction another 3000 km rural roads under the central scheme in the next financial year.

Officials from the rural development and rural works department of Bihar, Jharkhand, West Bengal and Odisha were here to give a presentation about the status of implementation of the scheme in their respective states. The meeting was chaired by secretary, Union rural development department, L C Goyal, who is also the vice president of National Rural Road Development Agency (NRRDA).

S K Sathpathy, principal secretary, state rural works department, gave a detailed account of the achievements of Jharkhand in the current financial year. He said that a target of 2000 km rural road at an estimated cost of Rs 850 crores was fixed for the state. “We have spent around Rs 800 crore and are about to complete the target of connecting 1000 inhabitations under the scheme,” he said, expressing happiness that in the next financial year the state would be benefited by receiving the sanction t build yet another 1000 km rural roads.

Members in the team who went on a field visit to Saranda in West Singhbhum and remote villages of Ranchi, expressed satisfaction over the quality of roads being built under the scheme. Issues like preferring local contractors for execution of construction work in remote villages where the rebel groups are active were also taken up.



Zydex Technologies eyes building 20,000 km green roads in India by 2016

November 22, 2013

By PTI |

 The Gujarat-headquartered organisation has patented its nanotechnology which reduces water percolation into roads.

(The Gujarat-headquartered organisation has patented its nanotechnology which reduces water percolation into roads )

 NEW DELHI: Zydex Technologies today said it is eyeing building up to 20,000 km of moisture-resistant green roads in India by 2016 using its nanotechnology, after building such highways in US, Europe and Africa.

“We are looking at building 10-20,000 km of roads using our innovative technique in India in the next three years to provide moisture-resistant and pothole-free roads, which need no maintenance for about 15 years. We have already completed about 500 km of roads here with Border Roads Organisation and other agencies,” Zydex Industries CEO Ajay Ranka told PTI.

The Gujarat-headquartered organisation has patented its nanotechnology which reduces water percolation into roads.

Use of this technology can help the government save Rs 7,200 crore per annum on bitumen only, Ranka earlier told reporters.

 ”Bitumen consumption in India is about 4.5 million tonnes per annum, which costs Rs 18,000 crore, of which 80 per cent is used to resurface roads. Use of Zydex’s technology will not only double the life of roads but cut the cost by Rs 7,200 per year,” Ranka said.

Also, he claimed that using this technology the government can save over Rs 21,000 annually in maintenance of rural roads.

“The annual cost to the country for maintaining rural road assets is Rs 21,700 crore, which could be saved. In view of the cost of water proofing of about Rs 12,000 per lane km for the top layer and side slopes, the rain inflicted damages can be brought down very economically,” he said.

The CEO of the firm said it also plans to increase capacity four-fold to 6,000 tonnes a year at Vadodara plant with an expenditure of Rs 30 crore.

Ranka said the technology is getting wider recognition globally, including in Texas, where he claimed 40 per cent of roads were built using it, but rued that in India procedural delays prevent the country from getting the benefits of this advanced technology.

“We have orders from Canada, US, Germany, Sweden, Nigeria, Mexico, Russia, Turkey, Indonesia, Japan and many other countries which are rapidly using the technology but on home turf we are faced with roadblocks. Set protocols are there in other countries, which we lack here,” he said.

However, the company has built roads using the technology in Leh Laddakh region in collaboration with Border Roads Organisation.

 Besides, in some states it is working under Pradhan Mantri Gram  Sadak Yojana, he added


World Bank Group : $160 Million Financing for Rajasthan Road Sector Modernization Project, India –2500 km of Rural Roads to be constructed, 1300 villages to be connected

October 31, 2013

WASHINGTON, October 29, 2013 – The World Bank today approved a $160 million credit for the Rajasthan Road Sector Modernization Project to support the government of Rajasthan improve rural connectivity, enhance road safety and strengthen the road sector management capacity of the state.

In recent years Rajasthan has made considerable progress with developing its rural roads under the Prime Minister’s Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) – a flagship program of the government of India. More than 80% of its habitations, with population of over 500, now have road connectivity. However, some 7,357 villages in the state, with population below 500, do not have road connectivity as they are not covered under the PMGSY.

The Rajasthan Road Sector Modernization Projectapproved today will construct 2500 km of rural roads, connect around 1300 villages that are currently not covered under the PMGSY and also undertake preparatory studies for improving 700 km of priority sections of the state highways. The roads will be built to a bitumen surface standard and will include all necessary bridges and cross drainage works in order to maintain year-round connectivity.

The key components of the project include improving rural connectivity through construction of roads; supporting the government of Rajasthan’s Road Sector Modernization Plan (RSMP) by strengthening institutions, enhancing accountability and introducing new technologies to promote cost effective road construction; and strengthening road safety management systems.

“The Country Partnership Strategy for the World Bank in India is committed to working towards fostering inclusive growth in low-income states like Rajasthan. This project will build on our long engagement in the road sector in India by connecting small and remote habitations in the state to the mainstream. This will help improve access to markets, healthcare and education while creating new jobs and boosting agriculture,” said Onno Ruhl, World Bank Country Director for India. “An important aspect of the project will be on strengthening road safety in order to bring down the number of fatalities and serious injuries from traffic accidents in the state,” he added.

Recognizing that road safety is a critical issue in the country today, the project will support the strengthening of road safety management systems with the objective of reducing fatalities and serious injuries from road accidents in the state. It will include a 100 km safe corridor demonstration project which will focus on measures to improve the safety of pedestrians, bicyclists, drivers, passengers and motorized two-wheelers. The safe corridor will benefit from a multi-sectoral approach with better engineering, enforcement, health care and community awareness.

“The project will support the on-going roads modernization agenda of the Public Works Department (PWD) through improved asset management, financial sustainability and road user focus. The project will also demonstrate best practice in road design and construction, traffic management to improve road safety and environmental protection measures,” saidMesfin Wodajo Jijo, senior transport specialist and the project’s task team leader.

The gradual transformation of the PWD will not only help enhance the quality and effectiveness of its delivery but also sustain the assets created under these programs.

The Project will be financed by a credit from the International Development Association (IDA) – the World Bank’s concessionary lending arm – which provides interest-free loans with 25 years to maturity and a grace period of five years.

0 km: 60 km along Indo-China border

October 28, 2013

By Pradeep Kumar (ANI)


Itanagar, Oct.26 (ANI): ‘The headline should look like the eyes of a damsel to attract readers’, was a lesson for the mass communication students insofar as reporting is concerned.

I wonder if this headline would stir the readers’ psyche?

A visit to Bumla in Tawang district along the India-China border on October 20, was shockingly disgusting.

Maruti Gypsy and Mahindra’s Scorpio, both sturdy vehicles on hilly roads, found it difficult to negotiate the 45-km road from Tawang to the last border outpost that took almost two hours.

Few patches were only boulders without any sign of road. Travelling along the steep road was a uphill task, well neigh impossible to maneuver that forced the drivers to travel at almost 0 km speed.

This prompted a top ranking IPS officer to comment that the road condition is as it was a decade ago when I visited.

Chief Minister Nabam Tuki assured to  take up with the defence ministry for improving the border roads maintained by the BRO for the security of the nation.

This was the status of border road almost  19 months after Defence Minister A K Antony at Itanagar on 20th February 2012 had said that: “By and large, the border is peaceful, and at the same time, India is taking care of strengthening the capabilities to protect our national interest from any kind of challenges from any quarters. The eastern border is safe and we will make it safer, (and) for that, whatever is needed to strengthen our security apparatus, we are taking care of it continuously in a systematic manner.”

“India is strengthening its security capabilities in the eastern border. Along with that, we are also  taking care of the socio-economic development of the border areas. I want to make it amply clear that our security forces are capable of protecting our national interests,” said Antony without mincing any words.

What an irony? For, on arrival at the Bumla Pass, it was learnt that Land Cruisers used by the People’s Liberation Army travel at 60 km speed to reach the black topped road on the other side of the border.

Undoubtedly, Lok Sabha member Ninong Ering had told the floor of the house on April 20 last that the 1962 situation (When India had suffered a humiliating defeat at the hands of China) still prevailed along the Indo-China border. India and China shares about 3,500 km  border, 1,080 km in Arunachal Pradesh alone.

The union rural development ministry has approved a network of roads and bridges to improve connectivity in Arunachal Pradesh, a decision that comes just ahead of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s visit to Beijing and underscores the strategic importance of the bordering state over parts of which China lays claim.

The pre-empowered committee of Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana, the Centre’s rural roads programme, has cleared construction of 57 roads and 58 long-span bridges covering 842 km. Of these, 21 roads and 46 bridges are in areas along the India-China border. The projects will cost Rs 819 crore and connect 170 habitations in the state. State agencies and National Building Construction Corporation, a central public sector company, will construct these roads and bridges.

Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh’s push for strengthening connectivity in international border areas has led to speedy clearances since January for construction of 95 roads and 31 long-span bridges in the state, covering a length of 1,190 km at a cost of Rs 894 crore. The government has approved construction of roads connecting 126 clusters of habitations, each of which have population of less than 250.

The Bumla outpost records upto 15 feet deep snowfall and temperature goes down below -23 degree but the jawans continue to guard the border.

When would good sense prevail upon the New Delhi mandarins is a million dollar question!



Rs 40cr allotted for village roads in district

October 21, 2013


PUNE: The quality of roads in rural parts of the district should improve with a fresh allocation of Rs 40 crore to undertake construction of roads up to 89 km under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY). The work on 16 roads is expected to begin soon.

According to officials, the roads will connect small villages to bigger or prominent roads. The allocation of funds would help increase road network, especially in hilly areas, the officials added.

The Union government has sanctioned works worth Rs 354 crore for the state, which includes 105 road works and 29 bridges. Chief minister Prithviraj Chavan had submitted a proposal to increase the state’s road network to 639 km.

Funds have been allotted to as many as 10 districts, including Pune. Nandurbar district has got the maximum allocation (Rs 92 crore), followed by Chandrapur (Rs 45 crore) and Pune (Rs 40 crore).

Pune district officials said they would submit proposals for additional funds in the next round of allotment.




Jairam Ramesh writes to Mamata Banerjee, cites road projects as central help

October 16, 2013

Mohua Chatterjee, TNN

(In his letter, Ramesh said…)


NEW DELHI: Soon after West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee wrote an angry letter to the PM complaining about norms being flouted in allotment of funds to states, rural development minister Jairam Ramesh wrote to the CM saying his department had finalized funds for 421 roads covering 1,887 km in the state.

 While Banerjee wrote to the PM on October 5, Ramesh’s missive came three days later.

In his letter, Ramesh said road work in Bankura, Purulia and Pashchim Medinipur districts would be taken up under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojna (PMGSY) and an agreement would be signed between the PSUs undertaking the job and the Centre and the state government within the next 30 days.

Interestingly, Ramesh mentioned in the letter that funds were usually disbursed through central PSUs doing the work but it was now decided to hand over the funds directly to the state government. “I have been of the view that we should encourage state governments to exercise more direct control on project execution so that quality standards are maintained. Hence, we have decided that for West Bengal, we will release the funds directly to the state government who will then deal with the central PSUs,” Ramesh wrote.

“I am sure you will agree with me that West Bengal has received unprecedented level if cooperation in the matter of PMGSY roads as it has for other rural development programmes. This reflects the central government’s continuing priority to the welfare and well-being of the rural people of West Bengal,” he wrote.



Centre sanctions Rs1493 cr for roads

October 11, 2013

TNN  |

BHUBANESWAR: The central government has sanctioned Rs 1,493 crore for construction of 2,982-km road in the state under Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY).

Union rural development minister Jairam Ramesh communicated the Centre’s decision to chief minister Naveen Patnaik on Tuesday. Ramesh said last year the Centre had sanctioned Rs 2,445.75 crore to Odisha for construction of 5,189-km road. Earlier, this year proposals worth Rs 1,067 crore were sanctioned for 1,184-km road. Jairam’s letter said the state government could send more proposals for road construction before December.

While unhesitatingly approving road construction projects for Odisha, the Union minister expressed doubt over the state government’s ability to execute them. “The execution capacity is a major concern. The state will have to establish a minimum of 20 more project implementation units (PIUs) for expediting the sanctioned road projects. The state is having a workload of about Rs 6,000 crore and has engaged only 50 PIUs, whose capacity is only about Rs 3,125 crore,” Ramesh’s letter reminded Naveen. He also said the state government should send proposals for road connectivity to villages having more than 100 population in 18 IAP districts soon so that they could be approved ‘in the next couple of months’.

Ramesh said Odisha had ‘received unprecedented assistance’ from the Centre in the matter of rural roads. “However, around 13,000 km still remains to be sanctioned, which indicates the magnitude of the challenge,” the Union minister said, adding, the centre was ready to approve projects ‘provided the state government is able to submit the DPRs and expand contracting and implementation capacity expeditiously’.



Tewari lays foundation of 2 link roads, stresses on power of RTI

September 5, 2013

HT Correspondent , Hindustan Times   Ludhiana,


Union information and broadcasting minister and Ludhiana member parliament (MP) Manish Tewari laid the foundation stone for upgrading two link roads in Dakha assembly segment in Ludhiana parliamentary constituency under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojna, here on Sunday.

Tewari laid the foundation stone of the link road between village Sohian to National Highway-95 and Braich to Dhollan, being built at an estimated cost of Rs. 1 crore 6 lakh and Rs. 6 crore 39 lakh, respectively.

Tewari exhorted people to exercise the Right to Information (RTI) to ensure proper utilisation of funds for development.

 He said, “The union government allocates about Rs. 800 to 1000 crore per annum to the state of Punjab for various programmes such as rural development and Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA), among others, which are to be spent through zila parishads.”

Tewari added that the state government does not contribute its share in the central schemes and funds are also not being properly utilised by the zila parishads. This is why there was no development in the state, he said.

Talking about the power of RTI, Tewari added, “The UPA government has strengthened the common man with the power of RTI through which everyone has a legal right to know how much amount has been sanctioned and how much has been spent. All panchayat’s and citizens are free to seek details of development funds from the zila parishad.”

The state government should come up with a white paper on the state economy, said the Ludhiana MP. He added that if no central grant is given to Punjab, the state will have to face financial bankruptcy as it is currently unable to even pay salaries to its employees.

Congress leaders including Jagpal Singh Khangura, Major Singh Mullanpur, Manjeet Singh Bharowal, Pawan Dewan, Kaka Grewal, Ranjit Singh Mangat, Telu Ram Bansal, Purshottam Khalifa, among others were present at the function.