Highway construction slowed down to 28.64 km a day in FY22 amid Covid: Official
Constriction of the National Highways (NHs) in the country slowed down to 28.64 kilometres a day in fiscal of 2021-22 due to the coronavirus pandemic related disruptions as well as a longer-than-usual monsoon in some parts of the country, the Union Road Transport and Highways Secretary Giridhar Aramane told PTI.
The pace of national highway construction in the country had touched a record 37 km per day during fiscal of 2020-21. Primarily, the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) and National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation Ltd (NHIDCL) are responsible for the construction of national highways and expressways across the country.
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A total of 10,457 kms of highways was constructed during the last financial year of 2021-22, while highway projects of 12,731 km were awarded in the last financial year," Aramane told PTI. The government has recently signed a file to award contracts for construction of 1,000 km highway.
In a recent written reply to the Rajya Sabha, Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari informed that a total of 10,237 km of highways was constructed in 2019-20, and 13,327 km in 2020-21. The minister has time and again highlighted that a robust road network in the country provides a means of economic progress, and the expansion of the national highways network too could further quicken the pace in this regard.
The minster also pointed out that his mission is to reduce logistics costs of the constriction as well. He noted that currently the logistics cost in the country is 16 per cent as compared to 12 per cent in China while in European countries, it is 10 per cent.
In the Union Budget this year, finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman had said that the government plans to increased the national highways in the country by 25,000 kilometres during 2022-23.