STATE TIMES NEWS
SRINAGAR: In order to strengthen the road network across J&K, Lieutenant Governor, Manoj Sinha on Tuesday set the target of 8000 km of road length for the Public Works (R&B) Department . The meeting was informed about a quantum leap in terms of achievement made by J&K Government in the road sector with 3167 kms of new roads been built under 272 schemes in 2020-21 as compared to previous 5 years’ average of 1450 kms.The Lt Governor was chairing a high-level meeting to review the functioning of the PW(R&B) Department, wherein he sought the detailed status of achievements made and the goals set under various components.Reach out to unconnected habitations with road connectivity. Put concerted efforts to strengthen and expand the intra UT road network, especially in rural & remote areas so that the population living in these areas can be extended all basic amenities for leading a quality life, the Lt Governor asked the PWD officials.While seeking the present status of the physical health of the old infrastructure,
the Lt Governor directed the concerned officials to implement report of Safety Audit of Bridges in letter & spirit and further instructed them to prioritize work on bridges that needs immediate repairs.Emphasizing on keeping a regular watch on the work progress, the Lt Governor passed specific directions for regular on-ground visits of field officers for ensuring quality and constant monitoring of the infrastructure, and submission of the progress report on a regular basis, with special focus on road projects.People have high expectations from the Government. It is important to address their developmental needs by taking concerted measures in this direction, observed the Lt Governor.The Lt Governor suggested the officials to explore all possibilities to lay down a comprehensive mechanism to bring uniformity in tendering, quality control, inspection, and monitoring process.The Lt Governor also issued clear-cut directions for completion of projects hanging in for long.While reviewing the achievements being registered during the last six years, the Lt Governor complimented the efforts put in by the concerned officers for completing 3167 kms of new road length in 2020-21, which is more than double as compared to the length covered in previous 5 years.On being informed about the target set by the PW(R&B) Department for covering around 4200 km road under PMGSY I&II connecting 191 habitations, besides completing 237 languishing projects this year, the Lt Governor advised the officials for pooling of resources and opting for convergence mode for better outcome and speedy execution of projects.Under Pot-hole Free Road programme, this year, the department aims to make 6000 km road length free of pot-holes, the chair was informed.For maintaining transparency and accountability in the working of the department, the Lt Governor asked the concerned functionaries to put the working in public domain so that people can have easy access to all the relevant information. He also called for developing a mechanism for providing right information to the public with the factual position of the projects.On enquiring about the Health Infrastructural development being taken place in the UT, the Lt Governor was informed that the department is aiming at completing as many as 74 health infrastructural projects by the end of this year. The officials were also directed for ensuring effective utilization of installed oxygen plants.He directed the concerned officials to expedite the pace of work on all projects taken up by the Department under various schemes for their timely completion, besides taking all requisite measures to remove the bottlenecks, if any, to achieve the target within fixed timelines.The Lt Governor also sought a detailed report of schemes yet to be completed, besides work status of schools and colleges undertaken by JKPCC and directed for their completion in a time-bound manner.During the review meeting, Shailendra Kumar, Principal Secretary to Government, Public Works (R&B) Department gave a detailed briefing about the targets and achievements under various schemes /programmes implemented by PWD (R&B) department for Construction, improvement/upgradation of roads & bridges, for providing connectivity with special focus on rural areas viz. Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojna (PMGSY), Bridge Programme, Central Road & Infrastructure fund (CRIF), NABARD, Road Sector, Cities & Towns (Macdamization), Languishing Projects, Pothole Free Road Programme, NHAI/NHIDCL/BRO, and other departmental works.He informed the meeting that PW (R&B) Department is maintaining a massive road length of about 41584 kms, besides 1343 bridges across the UT.Public Works (R&B) Department has taken a major step forward to develop a web-based system to carry out monitoring and evaluation of all infrastructure projects. This shall be the paradigm shift from manual processes to online system, the Principal Secretary informed the meeting.The Lt Governor was also apprised about the status of Forest Clearances, health infrastructure, installation status of Oxygen Plants in J&K by MED, National Highways in J&K and, etc.Rajeev Rai Bhatnagar, Advisor to the Lt Governor; Nitishwar Kumar, Principal Secretary to Lt Governor; Vikas Kundal, Managing Director, JKPCC; Chief Engineers of allied agencies and other senior officers attended the meeting at Civil Secretariat.
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