PATNA: The central government has given its nod to upgrade 12 state highways and major district roads in Bihar to national highways (NHs) under the special package announced by PM Narendra Modi before 2015 state assembly elections.
State road construction minister Nand Kishore Yadav said on Tuesday funds to the tune of Rs3000 crore would be spent on upgrading the 12 roads. He said the detailed project reports (DPRs) have already been approved by the Centre and construction work is likely to start by this year end.
“Though PM’s special package for Bihar specifically mentioned a few new roads, but the state government was asked to select the roads which were to be upgraded to NH,” Yadav told TOI.
He said the ministry of road transport and highways has already given in-principal approval to upgrade 52 roads in Bihar to NH. “We have selected 12 roads in the first phase and the remaining roads will also be shortlisted soon,” Yadav said.
PM Modi had announced the special financial package of Rs1,25,003 crore for Bihar while addressing an election meeting in Ara on August 18, 2015. Out of that, Rs54,000 crore was proposed to be spent on construction of roads.
RCD officials said out of the 68 schemes under the special package, work has been awarded in 36 and 10 are in the tender approval stages while DPR for the remaining 22 schemes are being prepared.
The minister said work on a new four-lane bridge parallel to Mahatma Gandhi Setu over river Ganga would also start by this year end. Besides, another bridge is proposed parallel to Jayaprakash Setu between Digha and Sonepur as a part of the proposed Patna ring road. Both these projects are covered under the PM’s special package.
As per the preliminary alignment of the ring road, which has been approved by the Centre as well as the state government, it would pass through Bihta, Daniyawan, Fatuha, the six-lane Kachchi Dargah-Bidupur bridge under construction, Hajipur, Pahleja Ghat, Digha and up to Bihta.