Government prioritizing infrastructural development with the launch of many new projects

Published On: April 17, 2023 05:10 PM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, April 17: The government has prioritized infrastructural development which is evident from the ongoing projects of road construction, upgradation and other structures. The East-West Highway and Muglin-Pokhara road section are being upgraded into four lanes, and the construction of a flyover at Gwarko in Kathmandu, and a tunnel in Siddhababa has started.

Similarly, the construction of a signature bridge at Narayangadh bazaar under the Mahendra Highway, and the upgrading of the Nagdhunga-Naubise-Mugling road have begun, according to Sushil Babu Dhakal, director general of the Department of Roads.

Expansion of the Suryabinayak-Dhulikhel road has also been initiated, said Bhimarjun Adhikari, spokesperson for the Ministry of Physical Infrastructure and Transport.

"The construction of the Kakarvitta-Laukahi road and the Kamala-Dhalkebar road will begin soon," he said.

The government has prioritized the construction, upgradation and repair of the country's highways, he said. 

IThe government has adopted a policy of constructing flyovers at crossings in a bid to manage traffic congestion, said the department.

The government has a policy of constructing flyovers, installing traffic lights, and expanding and upgrading roads in the Kathmandu Valley will take place as per the policy, said Dhakal.

The Siddhababa tunnel aims to facilitate traffic and the mobility of people, said Adhikari.

Though the deadline of the projects of national pride is drawing nearer, they are likely to miss the deadline. These projects were expected to be completed earlier, but COVID-19 pandemic and other various obstructions delayed the implementations of the project.

According to Spokesperson Adhikari, the Mid Hill Highway and the Postal Highway will not meet the deadline as planned and it is necessary to reschedule the timeframe for the completion of those projects.

In case of the Mid Hill highway, 42 kilometers of its section has been blacktopped followed by the construction of four bridges while under the Postal Highway, 36 kilometers of highway has been blacktopped along with the construction of seven bridges.

Among the North-South Corridor, the Kaligandaki corridor reports much progress with the blacktopping of roads along 10 kilometers of area and the completion of four bridges. It has also completed the construction of a 30-km gravel road.

The Koshi Corridor has completed the construction of a 15-kilometer gavel road along with the construction of one bridge.

A track of 3.5 kilometers has been opened along the Karnali Corridor and a track of 38 kilometers has been widened.

Under the Madan Bhandari Highway Construction Project, 99 out of 185 bridges along the highway have been completed.

Under   the Nagdhunga Tunnel Construction Project three underpasses, four culverts, one overpass, and three bridges have been completed while under the Narayangadh-Butwal road project, 28 small bridges have been completed followed by the construction of three major bridges.

Likewise, seven small bridges have been constructed along the Muglin-Pokhara Road and so far the progress is around 30 percent.

Spokesperson Adhikari said that the problem, however, is budget crunch especially for the national pride projects.  

According to him, the progress has become slow since the onset of coronavirus. The progress was 57 per cent in the last fiscal year 2021/22 and 67 per cent in the fiscal year 2020/21. 

The ministry has forwarded a draft to formulate necessary laws for the establishment of the Transport Authority.

Spokesperson Adhikari shared that the draft of the regulations of the Transport Authority has already been prepared and has been sent to the Finance Ministry for consent. It would be sent to the Law Ministry after consent from the Finance Ministry before its presentation in the cabinet after receiving consent from the Law Ministry, he added.

According to the Ministry, construction of a two-kilometer railway track bed and two railway bridges along the east-west electric railway line was completed last year.

A 54-km track bed was prepared and construction of seven railway bridges has been completed so far, according to the Department of Railways. Director General of the Department, Rohit Kumar Bisural, said construction is underway only at the Bardibas-Nijgadh section.

“Railway service is in operation from Jaynagar to Kurtha,” he said, adding the report of the study of Raxaul-Kathmandu railway is yet to be received. Feasibility study of Kathmandu-Kerung railway is underway.

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