Next year, road sector will see a massive boost as there will more stretches of national highways, awarding and completion of multiple projects and fund raises in 2022, making it a better year than the passing one. The 2022 radar will also see connectivity with remote and tough terrains, an integrated multi-modal national network of transportation and logistics, decongestion of major points in the road network as well as steering ahead with the voluntary vehicle scrappage policy, Union Road Transport Secretary Giridhar Aramane was quoted saying in a PTI report. In the current fiscal, the Road Transport and Highways Ministry aims to construct 40 Kms of national highway every day. The target aimed by the ministry is higher than the record construction of 37 Kms daily during 2019-20 period.
According to Aramane, the achievement by the ministry can be much more than the current financial year. The ministry also has a pipeline for awards next year under the Bharatmala Pariyojna and the National Highway general programme, he said. Projects have been identified by the ministry which need to be offered next year under the Bharatmala Pariyojna.
Regarding road assets’ monetisation, Aramane pointed out that all the roads constructed by the state agencies are monetised for a short period of time, ranging from 1 to 3 years, or for a longer tenure spanning 15 to 25 years. So, as soon as the ministry completes a road construction, MoRTH will toll it for a year, if the market outlook is not good. The ministry will do it for 3 years or under the Infrastructure Investment Trust or under the Toll Operate Transfer model if the appetite is good, the Secretary further said.
He also mentioned the Modi government is thinking of securitising Delhi-Dehradun and Delhi-Amritsar-Katra Expressway projects. Besides, the ministry is also planning securitisation of the Raipur–Visakhapatnam NH project, which is going to be India’s first mineral highway in terms that it carries most of the mineral produced in the states of Odisha, Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand to Visakhapatnam port as well as other economic centres. One of the major initiatives taken this year by the ministry was the Vehicle Scrappage Policy’s announcement, which will phase out unfit vehicles, he said.
While in this fiscal, development work continued on the different NH projects and tunnels at high speed, including Bangalore-Chennai Expressway, Delhi-Mumbai Expressway and Zojila tunnel, foundation stone was laid for the Delhi-Dehradun Expressway as well as other projects. The ministry, as part of the ‘PM GatiShakti–National Master Plan’, is also working towards building an integrated multi-modal national network of transportation and logistics.