Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari has laid foundation of 33 NH projects in Karnataka

Speaking virtually on the occasion of foundation laying ceremony of 33 NH projects in Karnataka, Gadkari on Saturday said over 900 km NH length has been added in Karnataka during the last six years, and it now stands at 7652 km.

He said a total of 71 works are in progress in the length of 2,384 km for Rs 37,311 Crore. Out of these, more than 70 percent of progress has been achieved in 26 works amounting to Rs 12,286 Crore covering a length of 1,127 Km.

He added that for providing smooth connectivity to the ports for the benefit of trade and economy, 4-laning of the entire coastal road from Goa Border to Kerala Border connecting the port city of Belekeri, Karwar, and Mangalore covering a length of 278 km have been taken up for Rs 3443 crore and the work has been substantially completed.

Further, given the safety of road users, three works for improving the safety by providing protective measures on Hill slopes in Shiradi Ghat on NH-75, Charmadi Ghat on NH-73, and Sampaje Ghat on NH-275 have been sanctioned amounting to Rs.115 crore

He further informed that the Union Government shall invest approximately an amount of Rs 1,16,144 crore in Karnataka State in the coming years. He said 11 road projects of 275 km worth Rs 5083 crore have been awarded in the State during the financial years 2019-21.

The Minister informed that CRF works worth Rs 8,330 crore have been sanctioned till now for the State. Annual Accrual during this year is Rs 435 crore, while total release during this year is Rs 217 Crore. Union Minister Gadkari declared the release of this year's remaining Rs 218 Crore under CRF.

During the event, Gadkari called upon the state to take up the production of Ethanol in a big way, as it is one of the largest producers of sugarcane in the country.

He said, the country is already over-producing sugar and rice, and sufficient stock is available with the government. The surplus may be converted to Ethanol, which can be used as an alternative fuel for vehicles. He said this will not only improve farmers' income but will also be an indigenous source of fuel for the country.

The event was presided over by Karnataka Chief Minister YS Yeddiyurappa and was attended by former Prime Minister H D Devegowda, Union Ministers Prahlad Joshi, Sadanand Gowda, Gen V K Singh, ministers from the State and senior officers.

Chief Minister Yediyurappa assured to take forward all the suggestions given by the Union Minister. He said that his government is committed to the development of the State, and uplifting the lifestyle of its people.

Union Minister Sadanand Gowda enumerated the list of development works taken up by the Centre in Karnataka during the last six years. Union Minister Prahlad Joshi also appreciated the development efforts in the NH sector, and said, road connectivity is now a basic necessity like food, clothing, and shelter.

MoS Gen V.K Singh said the projects will provide better connectivity between major cities in the Karnataka region. He further said inter-state connectivity will be faster and hassle-free.

These will have a transformational impact on agriculture, fisheries, and health sectors. He said these projects aim to improve economic corridors, coastal and remote areas with rapid growth and safe movement of passengers and cargo.