.........BHUBANESWAR: With only 26 per cent of the annual target for rural road construction under Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) achieved, the Centre has asked the State Government to accelerate the works.While advancing the PMGSY deadline by three years from March 2022 to March 2019, the Ministry of Rural Development (MoRD) has fixed an annual target of 7,000 km of rural road construction under the flagship infrastructure development programme for the State for 2017-18.
The State Government is reported to have completed 1,818 km of roads by September-end which is 26 pc of the annual target. Since the work progress is slow, the Rural Development Ministry has released only 20.36 pc of the annual allocation of `1,559 crore.Expressing concern over the slow progress of PMGSY works, MoRD Secretary Amarjeet Sinha in a letter to Chief Secretary Aditya Prasad Padhi has requested to complete the target in time.
“In view of the less than satisfactory physical and financial progress under PMGSY, you are requested to personally intervene and review the progress at your level and direct the officers concerned to speed up the progress of works,” Sinha said.
Noting that contract for 1704 works out of 6292.41 km of road have not been awarded yet, Sinha urged the Chief Secretary to ensure early completion of tendering process as the construction season has begun.
The Union Ministry has also taken exception to 457 road works pending for more than four years while another 332 works are pending for over two years. The total length of the pending road works are
about 2525 kms.
If the annual PMGSY road target is met in time, 2,800 habitations will be connected. Meanwhile, 385 habitations have been provided all-weather connectivity by September. Around 8,650 habitations of the State are still to be covered under the programme, official sources said.The Centre has made an allocation of `1,559 crore for Odisha in the current financial year out of which `317.4 crore has been released. The State has already completed 10,979 road projects with a length of 41,873 km out of 14,435 road works cleared by the Centre.