Centre leapfrogs Uttarakhand govt on roads construction

  • Prithviraj Singh, Hindustan Times, Dehradun
  • Updated: Oct 21, 2015 15:22 IST
Pilgrim routes in Uttarakhand which were damaged during the 2013 floods. (Sanjeev Verma/HT photo)

The Central government will directly spend about Rs 12,000 crore to rebuild roads on Char Dham and Hemkund Saheb pilgrim routes in Uttarakhand which were damaged during the 2013 floods, adversely affecting the tourism business in the state, a union government official said on Tuesday.

The project will be completed in the next four years. It will include construction of new roads, several fresh alignments at landslide-prone zones, three tunnels, several bridges, Union ministry of road transport and national highways project director PK Maurya said.

The longest of the three tunnels will be 3 km long at Raditop, on the way to the Yamunotri temple. The second tunnel will come up near Chamba town, which falls on the way to Tehri while the third tunnel is planned at Datkali temple on the entry point of Dehradun wherefrom Chardham route network bifurcates, he said.

Maurya said the tendering process for a few other construction works had already been completed.

However, the central and state government sources see the centre’s move as a decision borne out of distrust between the two governments. “We seldom find the central government spending such huge amounts on road constructions at a stretch. This apparently is mainly due to lack of trust between the centre and the state .Otherwise why would state government be devoid of its nodal agency status on the projects being implemented in the state which has been a normal practice so far” said a senior PWD official on the condition of anonymity.

this is the second instance in Uttarakhand when the centre has kept the state government away from its funding. Earlier, Rs 100 crore under village development project was directly deposited to the respective Panchayats account instead of rooting it through the state government.

Sources said the central government had also denied the state of its share of funds to the tune of over Rs 10,000 core for the reconstruction of disaster hit areas.

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