Rural dev ministry okays Rs 1078cr for roads, bridges

Bhubaneswar: The Ministry of Rural Development has cleared the Rs 1078.72 crore worth proposal of the Odisha Government for construction of roads and bridges under Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) in the State.   
In a letter to chief minister Naveen Patnaik, Union Rural Development minister Jairam Ramesh said, the Pre-Empowered Committee of the ministry has approved the construction of 347 road works with a length of 1205 km connecting 396 habitations at a cost of Rs 595.72 crore, under ADB batch.
Similarly, the construction of 140 long-span missing bridges proposed on roads constructed under earlier batches of PMGSY at a cost of Rs 483 crore has also been sanctioned by the committee, he stated.
However, expressing concern over the implementation of several projects under PMGSY, the minister has asked the State Government to increase the number of Project Implementation Units (PIUs) to 70 by September 2013.
Ramesh cited that, since the State currently has 50 PIUs which are executing Rs 5000 cr worth projects, the increase will help effective implementation of additional projects to be sanctioned in the days to come.
The letter, mentioning the report of National Quality Monitors (NQMs) that 25% unsatisfactory works have been reported in ongoing projects in Odisha, advised the State Government that the State Quality Monitors (SQMs) must focus on quality in executing the projects.
The State Government has also been suggested by the minister that maintenance related expenditure has been low and needed improvement.