HP mulls Road Fund for maintenance of roads

Shimla

Himachal Pradesh has a vast network of road, but is of not adequate quality due to poor maintenance. To make the state roads better and for their proper maintenance Himachal Pradesh government has drawn up a proposal of setting up a “Road Fund”. The money deposited in this fund would only be used for the timely maintenance of roads.

Sources said that World Bank has also suggested the government to create such fund. The two states of country, Andhra Pradesh and Assam have also created such types of funds.

At present in Himachal Pradesh there are 20000 kilometres long metalled roads and their maintenance always had been a problem for the state government as a lot of money is required for their maintenance.

As per rules the every road require black toping at least after every five years, which means black topping is required in nearly on 4000 kilometres of total road length every year.

But due to lack of funds the government has been able to black topping the roads only up to 1500 to 2000 kilometres every year, just below half of the required.

For the black topping of a stretch of one kilometre of single lane road nearly a budget of Rs. eight lakh is required while for double lane road of one kilometre stretch involves an expenditure of nearly Rs. 15 lakh.

Director, State Road and Infrastructure Development Corporation, Pradeep Chauhan said that the idea is in its preliminary stage and the final decision is to be taken by the state government.

In the hill state of Himachal Pradesh, the roads are considered as life line as all economic progress of people depends upon the roads.

Sources said that the state government has also started its exercise to explore the possibilities that where the money would come from into this fund.

As the elections of state legislative assembly are due this year in the state and development had always been a major issue in the state. Development of any state can also be adjudged by the condition and network of roads.

Also on the issue of bad conditions of roads in the state the opposition Congress had always been gaining advantage during the last four years of BJP government.

ENDS