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398 villages to get road connectivity

Guwahati, Feb. 20: Altogether 398 villages in Assam, each with a population of more than 500, will be provided road connectivity under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana.

PWD minister Ajanta Neog today said the Centre has sanctioned Rs 820 crore to construct 689km roads and 347 bridges, connecting 398 villages.

She said the length of these bridges would be between 25 metres and 75 metres.

Neog said in the first phase, 426km road and 90 bridges would be constructed at a cost of Rs 310 crore.

“The technical evaluation of the first phase is currently under way and we hope to start work by the end of this financial year,” she said.

According to her, in the second phase, 263km of roads and 257 bridges will be constructed at a cost of Rs 510 crore.

The Union cabinet on February 7 cleared an important proposal to provide road connectivity to 36 villages, having a population of more than 250 in the border areas of Assam under the scheme.

Neog said the Centre had made an exception for Assam by allowing inclusion of villages having 250- plus population, which is usually not covered under the scheme.

She also hoped that the stretch of East-West corridor in Assam by the National Highways Authority of India would be completed next year.

“Union transport minister C.P. Joshi during his recent visit to the state told us that work on the East-West corridor in Assam will be complete by 2014,” he said.

She said many road projects running behind schedule in the state because of a delay in land acquisition.