The Centre is taking up road projects worth more than Rs 50,000 crore in Andhra Pradesh, including an Outer Ring Road (ORR) at Vijayawada, where the State’s new capital city is coming up.
Announcing this here today, Union Road Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari said these new schemes, which include 392 km of national highways, are in addition to similar projects worth more than Rs 15,000 crore which are already going on in the State ruled by TDP-BJP alliance.
He was speaking after laying the foundation stone for a six-lane fly-over at the famous Kanaka Durga temple here and three other ventures.
“The cost of new projects is Rs 50,560 crore. Already, work is going on projects worth Rs 15,000 crore. So, today, Rs 65,000 crore is to be given to the State of Andhra Pradesh from the federal Government under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modiji,” Gadkari said.
He declared different road projects in AP as national highways. “Today, you are expecting some new announcement from me. A 180 km Outer Ring Road around Vijayawada will be built with tentative cost of Rs 20,000 crore.”
Lauding the vision of Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu, he said the CM is planning the ORR as an eight-lane highway.
Talking about other projects of his Ministry, Gadkari said the modern highway being built between Delhi and Meerut in Uttar Pradesh would reduce the travel time between the two cities from three hours now to just about 40 minutes.
“When I took charge as Minister (in mid-2014) only 2km per day road construction was being done. It gives me great pleasure to say that today that has gone up to 18km a day. Our target is to take this to 30 km per day before the end of March,” he said.
Gadkari also announced setting up a new regional office of his Ministry in Vijayawada in the wake of bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh last year.
“Chandrababuji (Naidu) is our close associate. He was our true friend. As NDA partner, he maintained good relationship with our leadership. This is one of the things I appreciate about his leadership. It is our responsibility to give him more strength to fulfil the promises he has made to the people of Andhra Pradesh,” Gadkari said.
Speaking on the occasion, Union Parliamentary Affairs and Urban Development Minister M Venkaiah Naidu said the NDA Government is helping AP like no other State was ever helped.
Referring to the criticism of Congress and other Opposition parties against the BJP-led Government, he asked what did the Sonia Gandhi-led party do for AP when it was in power both at the Centre and in the State for a long period.