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Gadkari launches four highway projects in state

Dibrugarh: The Union minister of shipping, road transport and highways Nitin Gadkari recalled former US president John F Kennedy’s famous quote, “American roads are not good because America is rich, but America is rich because American roads are good”, while laying the foundation of four 4-lane national highway (NH) projects in Moran, 40-km from Dibrugarh town, on Saturday.

The projects, costing Rs 1,230.867 crore, include four-laning of the 19-km stretch between Moran bypass and Bogibeel junction near Lepetkata, Dibrugarh, (Rs 330.3 crore), four-laning of the 26.9-km road from Demow till the end of Moran bypass (Rs 385.557), four-laning of the 18.3 km between Rangagara and Kaliabor Tiniali (Rs 289.990 crore), and the 18.4-km stretch from the end of Nagaon bypass to Rangagara (Rs 225.020 crore).

“Unless we usher in reforms in road connectivity, poverty, starvation and unemployment cannot be eradicated. In the next five years, we will invest Rs1.5 lakh crore for improvement of road infrastructure here,” he said.
The minister announced the ‘in-principal approval’ of the ministry for declaring new national highway and preparation of detailed project report for roads and bridges connecting Sivasagar and North Lakhimpur, via Desangmukh and Dhakuakhana, and connecting Jorhat and North Lakhimpur, via Majuli.
Considering cost effectiveness, all new roads will be concrete ones instead of traditional bitumen roads, said Gadkari and added that five more road infrastructure projects would be undertaken in the state in three months. “An estimated 1.5 lakh youth will get employment through the projects. In five years, we are going to generate 10 lakh jobs in Assam,” he said.
Gadkari, who was accompanied by Union MoS for sports and youth affairs Sarbananda Sonowal, said the Centre would spend Rs 5 lakh crore on developing waterways in the country. Work on a 1,620-km waterway on the Ganga between Varanasi and Haldia has begun. Work on the remaining four – the Brahmaputra, Buckingham Canal, Kerala backwaters and Mahanadi – will take off soon, he said.

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