Patna: Acquisition of land for road projects in Bihar had slowed down in the wake of a new law coming into force four years ago, but things have looked up since then, the state government claimed today.
A release issued by the state Road Construction department said “as a result of a new land acquisition law coming into force in 2014, guidelines and procedures underwent lots of changes. This had resulted in delays in acquiring land. But now clarity has been achieved and acquisition of land has picked up speed”.
The state government’s submission comes close on the heels of a statement by Union Surface Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari who had claimed that projects worth Rs two lakh crore were stalled because of problems in land acquisition.
A section of the media had, however, claimed that the Union minister’s remarks were a snub to Chief Minister and JD(U) national president Nitish Kumar since the BJP was miffed over his recent statements on demonetisation and assertions by his party that it was the “big brother” in the NDA in Bihar.
Notably, the road construction portfolio in the state cabinet is held by a senior BJP leader Nand Kishore Yadav.
Although the release made no mention of the observations by Gadkari, it began with the remark “the Centre is providing laudable assistance in strengthening and development of infrastructure like roads and bridges in the state of Bihar”.
The release also said that altogether 82 road projects were underway in the state as part of a special package announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The total estimated cost of these projects is Rs 54,700 crore. Out of these 82 projects, the state government has been entrusted with the completion of 58 while the remaining 24 will be taken care of by the National Highway Authority of India, the release added.
Courtesy: Outlook India