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Odisha urges Centre to develop more NHs in southern-western region

Bhubaneswar, July 13: Chief Secretary Aditya Prasad Padhi on Wednesday urged the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways to develop more National Highways in southern and western Odisha while setting timelines for completion of the ongoing NH projects.

Padhi reviewed NH projects at the State Scretariat with the senior officers of the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways. He emphasised on development of the National Highway from Vizag to Jagdalpur which connects Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Chhattisgarh passing through Sunki, Koraput, Jeypore, Nabrangour, Buriguma and Kotpad in Odisha. 

Padhi too stressed on expediting works of the Vijayawada-Ranchi Corridor connecting Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Jharkhand and early completion of Berhampur-Rayagada road development work.

Currently, a total number of 22 NHs are passing through Odisha. They are NH 16, 18, 20, 26, 49, 53, 55, 57, 59, 63, 130C, 143, 149, 153B, 157, 220, 316, 326, 326A, 353, 516  and 520. The total length of these roads in Odisha is around 4849.42 km. While the State PWD has been assigned to develop 3,387 km, the NHAI has undertaken works for the rest 1462.42 km.

By now, the PWD has completed 867.39 km roads and set a target to complete 489 km roads during the current year. Chief Secretary directed the department to fix monthly targets for completion of works.

Similarly, the NHAI has completed development works of 610 km roads and work for 529 km roads is now underway. The bidding process for around 243 km has been completed and the projects for development 596 km are in the pipeline.

Works Secretary Nalinikanta Pradhan requested officers of the Ministry to sanction the road projects submitted by the State Government. Out of 44 proposals of Rs 1,047 crore submitted, the Centre has given in principle approval for only 12 proposals of estimated cost of Rs 400.97 crore.

Apart from this, Centre has approved two projects of Rs148 crore under Inter State Connectivity Scheme and two others of Rs 198 crore under the Economic Importance Scheme.

The issues relating to land acquisition, disbursement of awarded compensation, forest clearance and DGPS survey were discussed.

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