2 July:The Minister of State for Shipping Road Transport and Highways Shri K.H. Muniyappa has said that there is need to integrate the North eastern region with the rest of the country by adequately strengthening, expanding and maintaining the network of roads and highways, providing improved connectivity and accessibility of the region as well as improving the intra-region connectivity covering villages,
inhabitations and backward and remote areas by roads, thus ensuring uninterrupted traffic flows at all times. He was addressing at a function organised by Ministry of North Eastern Region for releasing a document ‘North East Vision 2020’ here today.
Shri Muniyappa has said that his Ministry has started special programs to strengthen & expand the network of roads and highways to provide improved road connectivity and accessibility of the region with rest of the country and with the neighboring countries as well as improving intra-region connectivity, covering villages, inhabitations and backward & remote areas. He said that the improvement and up-gradation of about 11500km long stretches of primary road network of North East is proposed under various programs, the estimated cost of which is about Rs 70000 crore. All these roads will be completed by 2015, or before. Majority of roads will be completed by 2013. This initiative would integrate the region with rest of the country and would also help in developing local trade & industry, he added.
The Minister informed that a 678 km long 4-lane highway from Silchar to Srirampur in Assam is being constructed at an investment of about Rs 6000 crore as part of East West corridor. This high speed high capacity highway would efficiently connect the region with rest of the country. The intra-region network of primary roads is being improved & strengthened under Special Accelerated Road Development Program, called SARDP-NE. Up-gradation of 706km national highway stretches to complete 4-lane connectivity to all capital towns of North East States, except Gangtok is proposed under NHDP-III. Gangtok is to be linked by an alternate highway, in addition to existing NH 31A. Work on about 3000 km length with estimated cost of about Rs 19000 crore has already begun and delivery of completed roads started from 2008.
Shri Muniyappa said that during 2007-08, about 150km stretches of important roads were completed and 330 km roads will be completed during 2008-09. A package covering about 3200 km roads of Arunachal Pradesh has been prepared by the Ministry, which was announced by Prime Minister on 31st January 2008 at Itanagar.
The Minister gave details of the various National Highways were done for the development of North Eastern Region including the Phase A and Phase B of SARDP-NE and said that a clear visibility of works on National Highways of North East is now there. He that the current year will see major change in the quality of roads in North-East and hoped that the vision document will be a trend-setter for the overall socio-economic development of the North-East region.