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Tuesday, 17 Oct 2017
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Bharatmala road project: NHAI announces next three lots covering 9,980 km


The Ministry of Road Transport & Highways has set a target to construct 44 economic corridors across Mumbai-Cochin-Kanyakumari, Bengaluru-Mangaluru, Hyderabad-Panaji and Sambalpur-Ranchi under the Bharatmala project.

The Bharatmala project entails developing the highway network from the country’s western to eastern region — from Gujarat to Mizoram. The plan is to develop 50,000 km of highways. The project will attract an investment of Rs five lakh crore.

The Bharatmala project is an umbrella programme and covers all existing highway and expressway projects that were in progress under the National Highway Development Project (NHDP).

The Ministry of Road Transport & Highways, under the Bharatmala Pariyojana, has taken up the task to improve road connectivity to coastal / border areas, backward areas, construction, rehabilitation and widening of about 1,500 major bridges and 200 railway over bridges (RoBs) / railway under bridges (RUBs) on national highways.

As a first step towards this task, the government invited bids for preparations of detailed project reports for 15,000 km of such corridors under the first phase, in November 2016. A total length of 9,000 km of Economic Corridors is proposed to be developed under the first phase of the project. Bids have been invited in 45 packages of about 300 km each.

The next batch of three lots (4,5 and 6) were announced by NHAI in September 2017. The nodal agency had invited proposals from consultancy services for preparation of the DPR for development of Economic Corridors, Inter Corridors and Feeder Routes.

The project is aimed at achieving faster movement of cargo, along with developing multimodal logistics hubs and parks on the periphery of major commercial centres.

The Ministry is also expecting the cabinet nod soon for construction of this 24,000 km of new highways, as well as feeder routes along these roads.

The government will fund around 80 percent of the total work which will be undertaken on engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) basis. The remaining work will be undertaken on public-private partnerships (PPP) under the hybrid annuity model (HAM). The government will fund more than Rs four lakh crore on its own on the project in the next five years.

In order to undertake large scale highway development projects, the government can resort to off budgetary mechanisms such as raising funds through National Highways Authority of India bonds, from Life Insurance Corporation, Provident Fund Organisation, and other institutional investors.

In another major development, the Ministry plans to invest Rs 10,000 crore in Andaman and Nicobar Islands to develop a series of projects. On 6 October 2017, foundation stones were laid for rehabilitation and upgradation of NH-4 to two lanes from Austin Creek to Kalara at Diglipur, and Beodnabad-Ferrargunj section of the NH-4 at Baratang.

Besides this, on 3 October 2017, seven NH projects were dedicated to the nation and foundation stones were laid for six NH projects in Andhra Pradesh. The total cost of these projects was Rs 4,153 crore.

Top five road projects under Bharatmala Pariyojana

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