Fresh differences have arisen between the Mayawati-led Uttar Pradesh government and the Centre, with the former threatening to bring all centrally-sponsored highway projects in the state to a halt.
In an April 6 letter, the UP government told the Centre it was withdrawing from the “state support agreement” with the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI). The future of some 20 NHAI projects costing Rs 22,000 crore is now at risk.
The NHAI will get no assistance from UP to acquire land or to deal with law and order issues. “Several NHAI projects might even have to be abandoned,” an NHAI official said.
Transport secretary Brahm Dutt confirmed the ministry had received the letter. The UP government, however, said its decision was provoked by the Centre’s delay in signing the state support agreement. “The agreement was never there,” said Ravindra Kumar, principal secretary, UP PWD.