The government has decided to reduce time frame by three months of 300 projects scheduled for completion in June 2019, and now those are likely to be completed by March next year, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari said today. The move, which comes at a time when less than a year has been left for 2019 Lok Sabha elections, Gadkari said is aimed at fast-tracking schemes to deliver world-class infrastructure to people with no “political interest”.He said the sole intention of the government was to work on a “mission mode” to bolster development.
“All projects which were scheduled to be completed by June 2019, will be completed before March 2019 … We have given this target to everyone,” the road transport and highways minister said.
Gadkari, who was addressing the media here following a two-day review of over 700 ongoing National Highways projects in 20 states, said the ministry has identified about 300 projects for completion by March 2019. Of these, about 100 projects are likely to be completed by December 2018.
To a query whether shortening the deadline was to derive political mileage, the minister said, “We do not build roads motivated by political interest”, and added “whatever is to happen will happen in the elections but this country should develop whether there is a government of BJP or Congress or any other party”.
Quipping “Jo vote dega uska bhi bhala hoga jo nahi dega uska bhi bhala hoga (those who cast vote (in favour of BJP) will benefit and those who do not cast will also benefit)”, the minister emphasised that roads were built for all irrespective of caste, creed, religion or party.
He added that the government was building roads everywhere whether Rae Bareli or Amethi.
He questioned whether the recently inaugurated two expressways – Eastern Peripheral Expressway and the first-leg of the Delhi-Meerut Expressway were meant only for Hindus or Muslims, and emphasised that all were using these.
Gadkari also said highways building under Bharatmala will be expedited.