April 23, 2008

The following stretches under National Highways Development Project (NHDP) Phase-VI have been identified for implementation.  

S. No.

Name of Expressway

Length (Km)

Status of work




The consultant for fixing of alignment has been appointed.




The proposal from the consultants for fixing of alignment has been invited.







            The Delhi-Jaipur stretch was one of the stretches announced by the Finance Minister in his budget speech for the FY 2008-09 for construction of Expressway.  The project was to be finally selected for implementation on the basis of traffic volume.       However, in view of the upgradation of existing alignment to six lane under NHDP Phase-V, which will be sufficient to cater to the traffic volume for another 10-12 years, the new Expressway is not envisaged, at present.

      NHDP Phase VI is targeted for completion by December 2015. 

This information was given  by the Minister of  State for  Shipping, Road Transport and Highways, Shri K.H. Muniyappa in a written reply in the Lok  Sabha today.


NHAI terminates road contract awarded to MP-owned company

April 21, 2008

Parliament member Samba Siva Rao’s Progressive Constructions was unable to build 55km road

New Delhi: Under pressure for poor results and with the government seeking an overhaul of its management team, the National Highways Authority of India, or NHAI, the country’s road regulator, has begun axing contracts for non-performance, including those awarded to companies with powerful political connections.

These troubled contracts are partially to blame for holding up completion of the so-called Golden Quadrilateral that would connect four regions of India through 5,846km of four-laned highways. Within the last month, NHAI has cancelled two contracts and encashed their bank guarantees.

The more high profile of the two was the termination of a contract awarded to a company run by the family of a Congress party member of Parliament, Kavuru Samba Siva Rao.

“These contracts had to be terminated because they had defaulted,” said NHAI chairman N. Gokulram, refusing to discuss the matter further.

As many as eight contracts under the Golden Quadrilateral have already been terminated between 2006 and 2007. Of the 5,846km of highways that were to be four-laned under the project, NHAI is yet to complete 206km.

Hyderabad-based Progressive Constructions Ltd, which was set up by Rao, a four-term MP, and is managed by his son Bhaskar Rao, was not able to complete the 55km stretch even four years after the initial deadline expired. Consequently, NHAI terminated the contract and encashed a bank guarantee of around Rs50 crore submitted by the company when it was awarded the Sunakhala–Ganjam highway project.

NHAI officials, who did not wish to be identified, insist that this is just the beginning and it “would spare no one regardless of their political connections”.

A dozen contracts, whose performance is holding up completion of the Golden Quadrilateral project which was started by the National Democratic Alliance government in 1998, but is yet to be completed, are being scrutinized by NHAI.

According to officials in the ministry, Progressive was awarded the contract in 2001. The highway work was to be completed by 2004. When the contract was terminated last month, the company was only half-way done, with the project valued at Rs163 crore.

“I am not looking after these things (management). My son Bhaskar Rao runs the company,” said Rao, adding that there was also a feeling among contractors that “all was not well with NHAI.”

While the MP declined to elaborate the reasons for not being able to proceed with the project, he maintained that problems faced by the contractors, such as land acquisition, threat from Naxalites and law and order issues, have not been addressed.

“NHAI could not hand over the land within the time frame and in the sequence as was stipulated in the contract. This has affected the project,” insisted a senior executive with Progressive.

NHAI has also terminated the contract of Prakash-Atlanta, a joint venture between Prakash Building Associates Ltd and Atlanta Infrastructure Ltd, for failing to complete the Lucknow bypass on time. An NHAI officer said the regulator had also encashed the bank guarantee of Rs28 crore from the company.

However, the company says that it was its contractor who had initiated the termination proceedings. In a 14 March letter addressed to the NHAI chairman and the consulting engineer for the project, a copy of which was viewed by Mint, the contractor requested that the contract be terminated and NHAI provide compensation.

The letter said the contract was supposed to be completed in 30 months by August 2004. The contractor, however, alleged that a number of problems, including land acquisition and variance in scope of work, dogged the project.

“Another problem is the quality of the detailed project reports,” said an official with the company, who did not wish to be quoted. The project went to an arbitration tribunal following disputes over variation in costs of the project.

“Now it has become crystal clear to us that the policy of NHAI is to use the contractor as a resource and exhaust him completely before termination of the contract wrongfully and illegally, and further crippling the contractor by making demands on securities and bank guarantees,” the letter stated.

The letter also said the contractor filed two separate termination notices to NHAI. Each time, the contractor was persuaded to continue work on the project.

“On the one side, the government is insisting on completion. On the other side, bankers and shareholders are asking for results. So, any delay in finalizing the bills or making payments from government side may have lot of impact on the promoters credibility with the bankers and also with the government and of course the investors,” said Murali M., director general of the National Highways Builders Federation.


Australia’s longest tunnel with Kapsch technology: Another contract from Australia for Kapsch TrafficCom AG

April 17, 2008

KapschKapsch TrafficCom will equip Australia’s longest tunnel. In March 2008, the company was able to secure contracts with a project sum of more than 11 million Australian dollars (more than EUR 6.4 million). More specifically, Kapsch will supply the road side equipment as well as the central telematics system for the tolling in the North-South Bypass Tunnel in Brisbane. With this contract, Kapsch TrafficCom is consolidating its strong market leadership in Australia.

“We are pleased about being awarded the contracts for equipping the North-South Bypass Tunnel. This traffic project emphasises Australia’s leading position in traffic systems and fully electronic toll systems. With this contract, Kapsch TrafficCom can also continue its success story in Australia – since 2000, several major projects have been realised in Australia – e.g. in Melbourne and Sydney”, explains Erwin Toplak, Management Board Member of Kapsch TrafficCom AG.

Upon its completion in 2010, the North-South Bypass Tunnel in Brisbane will be the longest in Australia. The tunnel, with a project length of 6.8 kilometres, includes two 4.8 km double-lane tunnel tubes. Kapsch TrafficCom is equipping this with a central traffic telematics system, including two signal bridges and a complete back-office solution. When complete the tunnel will create a new link for north-south traffic underneath Brisbane and will significantly reduce the volume of traffic in the city.

Further information also available at:

Kapsch TrafficCom AG is an international provider of innovative traffic telematics systems, products and services. Kapsch TrafficCom mainly develops and supplies electronic toll collection (ETC) systems, especially multi-lane free-flow (MLFF) ETC systems as well as offering technical and commercial operating services for these systems. In addition, Kapsch TrafficCom offers traffic management solutions focusing on traffic safety and traffic control, electronic access control systems and parking space management. With more than 140 installed toll systems worldwide in 30 countries in Europe, Australia, Latin America, the Asia-Pacific region and South Africa, and with a total of more than eleven million transponders and 11,000 equipped traffic lanes, Kapsch TrafficCom has positioned itself as a worldwide market leader for ETC systems. Kapsch TrafficCom is headquartered in Vienna, Austria and has subsidiaries and representative offices in 18 countries.

Vienna, 31st March 2008

For further information:
Brigitte Herdlicka
Public Relations & Sponsoring
Kapsch Group
Phone: +43 (0) 50 811 2705
A-1120 Vienna, Wagenseilgasse 1
E-mail: [email protected]

Way paved for Ghaziabad expressway

April 17, 2008

GHAZIABAD/GREATER Noida: The Ghaziabad Development Authority (GDA) has finally decided to complete work on a number of roads, including the 12-kilometre expressway linking Greater Noida to NH-24 in Ghaziabad.

While 10.5 kilometres of the 12-kilometre expressway having been completed five years ago, a 1.5-kilometre stretch on NH-24 had been encroached upon. Now, GDA vice-chairman SK Dwivedi said compensation and alternative plots of land will provided to residents along the route to clear the area in order to complete the expressway.

Meanwhile, the GDA has decided to go ahead with plans to build a six-lane expressway linking the Hindon bridge at Meerut Road and the Greater Noida-Ghaziabad expressway. The GDA and NHAI have already decided to widen NH 24 from UP Gate to Lal Kuan.



April 8, 2008

Execution of National Highway works in North Eastern Region (NER) is carried out by Border Roads Organisation, National Highways Authority of India and State Public Works Departments (PWDs). Border Roads Organisation is executing NH works in Sikkim and Tripura fully and in other States partly against lump sum amount allocated by the Ministry each year. National Highways Authority of India is executing the special programmes for which Annual Plan is not drawn. PWDs of Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram and Nagaland are also engaged to execute NH works in these States on the basis of sanctions accorded by the Ministry in successive annual plans. Eleventh Plan for development of national highways is yet to be finalised by the Government. The amount of works for development of National Highways approved by the Ministry during 2007-08 (1st year of eleventh plan) and the amount of works included in the list of works prepared by Ministry for sanctions during 2008-09 in respect of the above-mentioned 6 States to be executed by 6 PWDs is given below:-

(Rs in crore)


Amount of sanctions

accorded during 2007-08

Amount of works listed

for sanctions during 2008-09
















The expenditure incurred on development of National Highways in NER during 10th Plan is Rs 2383.93 crore. In addition expenditure on development of National Highways have also been incurred on Special Accelerated Road Development Programme in North East (SARDP-NE). The expenditure under SARDP-NE during 2006-07 is Rs 91.65 crore. The budget of 2008-09 is yet to be passed by the Parliament.

Four lane Guwahati bypass was completed during 10th Plan. Karimganj,  Nagaon, Daboka, Lanka, Lumding, Maibang, Udharband, Mahour, Baihata and Agartala  bypasses are under construction and bypasses of Dibrugarh, Tinsukhiya, Makum, Dum Duma, Rupai, Digboi, Margreita, Ledo and North-Lakhimpur in Assam and Shillong, Jowai and Tura bypasses in Meghalaya and Dimapur and Kohima bypasses in Nagaland and Gangtok bypass in Sikkim are in Planning and Survey & Investigation stage.

Timeframe for works of double laning, 4-laning and construction of bypasses approved during 2007-08 is given below:

 List of  works for  double laning, four laning and bypasses approved under Annual Plan during 2007-08

 This information was given  by the Minister of  State for  Shipping, Road Transport and Highways, Shri K.H. Muniyappa in a written reply in the Lok  Sabha today.


Four-laning of Hyderabad-Vijayawada road from December

April 7, 2008

VIJAYAWADA: The long-awaited Rs 1460 crore four-laning of Hyderabad-Vijayawada Road will commence in December. The National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) will finalise the tenders by June.

Currently, the four-laning has been completed between Vijayawada and Nandigama (50 km) and Hyderabad and Malkapuram (40 km). The 181 km stretch between Malkapuram and Nandigama will now be four-laned.

NHAI Vijayawada-Hyderabad section project director P Srinivasa Rao said the work will be completed in two years time. The NHAI, the State Government and the contractors will enter into a state-support agreement before commencing the works, he added.

VIJAYAWADA-MACHILIPATNAM ROAD: Srinivasa Rao said the the Vijayawada-Machilipatnam Road will also be widened to 200 feet. This would be done for 150 km. The tenders would be finalised in June and the works would begin from December.

The widening is estimated to cost Rs 493 crore. The widening has become necessary in view of the heavy vehicular movement on the road and the future needs that may arise after the establishment of the new port.

The project director met superintendent engineer of Irrigation T Shivaji recently to discuss the widening as some irrigation canals pass along the road.



April 4, 2008


The Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu Dr. Kalaignar M., Karunanidhi will inaugurate four projects completed at a total cost of Rs. 80 crore by the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) on Wednesday the 9th April 2008. He will also lay the foundation stone for Foot-over Bridge at Chromepet on the same day.

The function for the inaugural ceremony would be presided over by the Union Minister of Shipping, Road Transport and Highways Thiru T. R. Baalu and the Minister for Local Administration, Government of Tamil Nadu Thiru M.K Stalin would be the Chief Guest. The Guests of honour of the function would be Thiru M.P. Swaminathan, Minister for Highways, Government of Tamil Nadu and Thiru T.M. Anbarasan, Minister for Labour, Government of Tamil Nadu.

The Irumbuliyur Underpass has been built at a cost of Rs. four crore, four-laning of Chennai Bypass Phase-I up to Porur has been completed by NHAI at a cost of Rs. 70 crore, the pedestrian subway at Tirisulam has cost Rs. five crore and the Bus Shelter at Chromepet built under the MPLAD Scheme has cost Rs. 82 lakhs. The completion of the Irumbuliyur Underpass will facilitate right turn for the Tambaram Traffic to access Chennai Bypass and thereby quicker connectivity to the Golden Quadrilateral Corridor.

The Chromepet Foot-over Bridge for which the foundation stone will be laid on Wednesday to facilitate the commuters in crossing NH-45 to access the railway station on the other side and vice versa which provides rail connectivity to southern part of Tamil Nadu, would cost Rs. 2.40 crore.

Thiru T.R. Baalu has expressed the hope that with the completion of these four projects, the people living in and around these areas would be greatly benefited.


NHAI goes in for a board shake-up

April 3, 2008

The ministry of shipping, road transport and highways has been under severe criticism for NHAI’s inability to meet the deadlines for developing road projects in the country.

New Delhi: Ahead of plans to give out some 10,000km in road projects over the next year, the ruling United Progressive Alliance, or UPA, is replacing at least half of the six-member board of the National Highways Authority of India, or NHAI, the country’s apex road regulator.

The radical revamp of the board, the first of its kind, comes at a time when the ministry of shipping, road transport and highways, which works closely with NHAI, has been under severe criticism for its inability to meet the deadlines for developing road projects in the country.

The revamp comes at a time when the ministry of shipping, road transport and highways has been under criticism for its inability to meet the deadlines for developing road projects in the country

The revamp comes at a time when the ministry of shipping, road transport and highways has been under criticism for its inability to meet the deadlines for developing road projects in the country

NHAI oversees the National Highway Development Programme (NHDP), under which, almost 33,097km of highways were to be four-laned. Barely 50% of the projects have been awarded so far. As of February this year, work on only 7,942km of highways have been completed; of this, work on around 5,500km was completed during the tenure of the National Democratic Alliance government, which preceded UPA.

NHDP, launched in 1996, was seen as a flagship programme for successive governments, especially since an estimated 60% of freight is still transported by road in the country. There are 66,000km of national highways in India.

Neither the minister, T.R. Baalu, nor the concerned officials, NHAI chairman N. Gokulram and road transport secretary Brahm Dutt, could be immediately reached for comment on Thursday evening. As a result, it is still not clear as to why the government has sought such an overhaul in the NHAI board. The changes have been effected over the past 15 days.

Mint has independently confirmed from various government officials who do not wish to be identified that three out of the six members on NHAI’s board were asked to return to positions at the ministry in the last fortnight. According to officers at NHAI who do not wish to be identified, one of the members C. Kandasamy has already been named a chief engineer at the ministry of shipping and road transport.

A.V. Sinha and Nirmaljeet Singh, too, are being forced to “come back” to their parent ministry. “In one case, the ministry said it would promote a junior officer thereby forcing an NHAI member—on deputation with NHAI—to seek repatriation (back to the ministry),” an officer at the regulator who did not wish to be identified added.

While Sinha could not be reached for comment, Nirmaljeet Singh and Kandasamy declined comment. “I am not with NHAI any more. And for any information pertaining to board members, please contact the chairman,” Kandasamy said.

The shake-up in NHAI’s board comes at a time when the regulator has been accused of not only failing to meet deadlines, but also misgovernance.

“In fact, one of the members was threatened with suspension because some projects in Tamil Nadu got delayed,” said the officer at NHAI.

Highway builders say working with NHAI is difficult primarily because officers refuse to make decisions. “You can say one contractor is bad or may be two contractors are bad, but how can all contractors be bad at the same time? It is the authority (NHAI) that refuses to make decisions for three years sometimes. We are tired of working for them,” said an executive with a highway builder who did not wish to be named. “Why is it, that the same contractors perform on time when it comes to work by the Delhi Metro Corporation?” the executive asked.

Contractors also claim that the authority is unwilling to release money for changes in the scope of work for fear of being investigated by the vigilance department. Mint had earlier reported that almost three in ten NHAI contracts end up in some form of arbitration or the other.

None of the contractors or highway builders contacted by Mint would speak on record, saying it could affect their chances of winning contracts from NHAI in the future.

Meanwhile, the NHAI officials said the board was being revamped because it did not agree with certain proposals made by the Planning Commission on guidelines for drafting tenders for upcoming projects.

“The fact is that the minister has been unhappy with the way the NHAI has functioned in the last year and so these changes are being contemplated,” said a senior government official, who did not wish to be identified.

NHAI has also been named in a court case filed by the National Highway Builders Federation, a trade body representing highway contractors, who claimed that recent pre-qualification criteria used by NHAI favour large bidders. The case is expected to be heard by the Delhi High Court on Friday.

One analyst said it was not fair to accuse only the board, saying that other organizations, such as the Planning Commission, were equally to blame for not ironing out policy issues related to work on NHDP. “The paranoia of the government (over being blamed for non-completion of highways in an election year) could be a factor,” said this analyst who did not wish to be identified.



March 20, 2008

4 laning of Patna-Muzaffarpur section of NH 19 & 77 has been included under NHDP Phase III in the State of Bihar on BOT (Toll) mode. Bids for 4 laning of Patna-Muzaffarpur Section of NH 19 & 77 were invited in June 2005 under old Model Concession Agreement (MCA) for which no response was received. Bids were again invited for the second time in June 2007 on the basis of new MCA with the last date of submission of bid as 20.08.2007. But, no response was received this time also. As there is no response of bidders on toll based BOT bid for the project stretch, Government has accorded approval for changing the mode of upgradation of Patna-Muzaffarpur Section of NH 19 & 77 from BOT (Toll ) to BOT ( Annuity). This information was given by the Minister of State for Shipping, Road Transport and Highways, Shri K.H. Muniyappa in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha today.  Source:


March 20, 2008

The Government had announced 1,000 km of expressway along the corridors of Vadodara-Mumbai (400 km) and six others from which the balance 600 km were to be selected. Delhi-Jaipur was one such corridor. Further decision for Delhi-Jaipur expressway is yet to be taken. However, Delhi-Jaipur section has been approved for six laning and the Build, Operate and Transfer (BOT) concession for the project has been awarded in February, 2008 under National Highways Development Project (NHDP) Phase-V. This information was given by the Minister of State for Shipping, Road Transport and Highways, Shri K.H. Muniyappa in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha today.  Source:

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