Shimla: The World Bank approved 82 million US dollar (Rs. 585 crore) for Himachal Pradesh State Roads Transformation Project (HPSRTP) for the State which envisages upgradation of major roads and modernization of the Public Works Department in the State.This was stated by Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur while presiding over the review meeting of Himachal Pradesh Public Works Department (PWD) here today. Jai Ram said that works of Barotiwala-Baddi-Sain-Ramshehar with length of 45 kms, Dadol-Ladraurr Road with length of 14.5 kms, Mandi- Riwalsar-Kalkhar with length of 28 kms and Raghunathpura-Mandi- Harpura-Bharari road with length of 3.5 kms would be undertaken in tranche -one.
Chief Minister said that the work of construction and maintenance of road projects in the State has been adversely affected due to the lockdown in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic. He said that efforts should be made to fix renewed targets taking a realistic view of situation. He said that local labour must be optimumly utilized so that work on ongoing projects could be expedited. Jai Ram said that the State Government had decided to allow inter-district movement of trucks carrying construction material from mining sites to project areas. He said that the government would soon consider opening of hardware shops so that works do not hamper due to want of construction material. He said that the government would also be considering inter-district movement of road construction machinery to the construction sites.
Chief Minister said that the government would also be contemplating to allow movement of concerned field staff as jurisdiction of National Highway Division was in more than one district. Thakur said that special thrust should be made on maintenance and repair of roads. He said that roads depict the developmental picture of any State thus special emphasis should be laid on their periodic repair. He said that local labour should be deployed to undertake such activities.It was informed in the meeting that target of construction of 900 kilometres road length was fixed for the year 2019-20 but 800 kilometres roads could be constructed during outbreak of coronavirus. It was also apprised in the meeting that target of construction of 4960 kilometres roads has been fixed under Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojna (PMGSY) for the year 2020-21 for which financial allocation of Rs. 1666 crore had been made. Principal Secretary PWD J.C. Sharma welcomed the Chief Minister and detailed about the various activities undertaken by the Department. Engineer in Chief PWD Bhawan Sharma, Engineer in Chief PWD Projects Lalit Bhushan and other senior officers also attended the meeting.