Modi's road & swachh gift

Patna, Oct. 13: Prime Minister Narendra Modi is arriving with gifts for the state, like during earlier visits. Apart from participating in the Patna University centenary function, the Prime Minister will lay foundation stones of four sewerage projects worth over Rs 738 crore and four national highway projects worth Rs 3,031 crore. However, the issue of special status for Bihar, an RJD demand, will not come up.

When chief minister Nitish Kumar parted ways with the RJD to join hands with the BJP, he had declared Bihar would see development, as both the state and the Centre would be ruled by the same political configuration.

"Saturday will be the first occasion after the formation of the JDU-BJP government when Prime Minister Modi and chief minister Nitish Kumar will share a platform," a senior BJP leader said. "What better opportunity than now to showcase how this government is better than the previous one for Bihar."

The four sewerage projects under Namami Gange plan are part of 29 projects sanctioned for Bihar at acost of Rs 4,918 crore. Prime Minister Modi will lay foundation stones for a sewerage treatment plant at Beur, sewerage system and network at Beur, sewerage treatment plant at Karmalichak and another plant and sewer network at Saidpur. These projects once completed will upgrade sewerage capacity for Beur from 20 million litres per day (MLD) to 120 MLD. These four sewerage plants are under 11 projects under World Bank funding which will create a total of sewerage treatment capacity of 350 MLD. After completion by 2035, Patna will have 100 per cent sewerage infrastructure with no untreated water flowing into the Ganga, the government claims. Seven other sewerage projects in Patna are in various stages of implementation of which two - Digha and Kankerbagh - are in public-private partnership (PPP) mode.

The four national highways for which Prime Minister Modi will lay the foundation stone from Mokama include four-laning of Aunta-Simariya section of NH-31 and six-laning of GangaSetu at Rs 1,161 crore, four-laning of Bakhtiyarpur-Mokama section of NH-31 at Rs 837 crore, two-lane construction of Maheshkhunt-Saharsa-Purnea road at Rs 736 crore and 2-lane construction of Biharsharif-Barbigha-Mokama section of NH-82 at Rs 297 crore.

Nitin Gadkari, Union minister for road transport, river development and Ganga rejuvenation, will accompany Prime Minister Modi on the occasion. All these are part of the special economic package the Prime Minister had announced before the 2015 Assembly polls. At that time, Nitish - then a political opponent - had dismissed them as "old wine in new bottle". He will now be there to thank Prime Minister Modi for kicking off the projects.


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