New Delhi: Amid the continuing Sino-Indian border standoff, the Centre on June 22 reviewed ongoing road projects along the Sino-Indian border and decided to expedite work on 32 of them, officials said.
The decision was taken at a high-level meeting convened by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), and attended by the Central Public Works Department (CPWD), Border Roads Organisation (BRO) and the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) among others.
“Works will be expedited on 32 road projects along the border with China and all concerned agencies will extend cooperation to fast-track the projects,” an official privy to the meeting told a news agency.
A total of 73 roads are being constructed along the Sino-Indian border.
Of these, the CPWD is working on 12 and the BRO on 61, under the direct supervision of the MHA, which is the nodal authority for all border infrastructure-related projects.
At least three vital roads are being constructed by the BRO in Ladakh, another official said.
Apart from the roads, priority will also be given to projects related to development of other border infrastructure like power, health, telecom and education.
The formation-cutting works were completed for 470 km roads along the border in 2017-20, in comparison to just 230 km in 2008-17, officials said.
Six road tunnels were constructed in 2014-20 in comparison to just one in 2008-14.
Besides, additional 19 road tunnels are under planning stage, they said, adding a total of 14,450 metres of border road bridges were completed in 2014-20 in comparison to 7,270 metres in 2008-18.
A total of 4,764 km of roads were constructed in 2014-20 in comparison to 3,610 km in 2008-14.
Similarly, the budget for the road projects has also been increased in recent years.
In 2017-18, Rs 5,450 crore were earmarked for road projects for the border areas, Rs 6,700 crore in 2018-19, Rs 8,050 crore in 2019-20 and Rs 11,800 crore have been earmarked for the road projects in 2020-21.