Jammu, Dec 05: Chief Secretary, Atal Dulloo on Tuesday said that the quality of roads defines the overall development of any area.
The Chief Secretary held an in-depth review of the Public Works Department (PWD) and the different schemes of infrastructure building under implementation here in the Union Territory. The meeting was attended by Principal Secretary, PWD Engineer-in-Chief; Director Finance, R&B besides other concerned.
During this meeting, Dulloo observed that the road infrastructure is vital for overall development of any area. He impressed upon the Department to prioritize few roads going to newly found tourist destinations in each division for upgradationin order to develop these destinations for better experience of the visitors going there.
He also maintained that the maintenance of road surface should also be monitored by the Department as the quality of roads defines the overall development of any area.
He asked for providing fair weather roads to each such habitation which are still unconnected here in J&K.
The Chief Secretary further observed that the density of National Highways in the UT has substantially increased yet there is scope to enhance it further to be at par with other Himalayan states around us. He also asked for furthering the efforts for completing different road projects on time.
In his presentation, the Principal Secretary, PWD, Shailendra Kumar gave an overview of all the major projects and works under execution through the Department. He gave the physical progress made on each project taken up under PMDP, CRIF, PMGSY, NABARD and other UT sector schemes with the estimated date of completion for each of them.
The Principal Secretary informed the meeting that the Department has taken several reforms which had ensured timely and quality execution of works in the UT. He gave out that the UT is first in the country that has ensured preparation of online Measurement Books for each work.
He further gave out that the out of total Road length of 41927 Kms, 36433 are blacktopped, 3012 are metalled, 2457 are fair weather roads. He said that the Department is making strenuous efforts to upgrade whole length of roads as blacktopped in a phased manner.
Moreover it was revealed that from April 2020-March 2023 7826 projects have been completed besides blacktopping 17247 Kms at an expenditure of Rs 18716.94 Cr. It was given out that the cumulative expenditure per month made during this three year period is Rs 519 Cr/month than Rs 319 Cr/month in the earlier 3 year period from April 2017-March 2020.
The major projects which came under review includes Semi Ring Road Jammu, Semi Ring Road Srinagar, Udhampur-Ramban Section of NH 44, Ramban-Banihal Section of NH 44, Jammu-Akhnoor-Poonch road, Chenani-Sudhmahadev-Goha-Khellani-Chatroo-Khanabal road, Srinagar-Shopian-Qazigund road, Srinagar-Baramulla-Uri Road, Z-Morh tunnel, Zojilla tunnel, Delhi Katra Amritsar Expressway besides roads and bridges taken up under CRIF, PMGSY and other schemes.
Later on the Chief Secretary also took stock of the snow clearance preparations made by the Department. He enquired about the machinery and equipments in place for timely opening of roads for public use. He stressed on clearance of all the roads with least hindrance to movement of people and essentials in all the snow bound areas.
The Chief Secretary was apprised that different road lengthshas been assigned to different agencies for snow clearance including SMC, JMC, R&B, NHIDCL, BRO etc and their machinery and equipment has also been earmarked along with the allied staff for spontaneous movement in time of snow.