The pre- Empowered Committee of the Union Rural Development ministry has recommended approval of 881 road projects in Odisha covering 2, 982 km amounting to Rs 1493 crore under Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY).
The formalities for financial sanction of Rs 1493 crore for the purpose will be completed in the next 30 days, Union Rural Development minister Jairam Ramesh revealed in a letter to Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Tuesday.
It may be noted that the ministry had sanctioned Rs 2445.75 crore for construction of roads measuring 5189 km during 2012-13 and Rs 1067 crore for construction of 1184 km of road during 2013-14.
Stating that he had assured the state government officials to come with further proposals for sanction by December this year, The Union minister said that since execution capacity is poor, the state government will have to set up at least 20 more project implementation units (PIUs) to expedite the sanctioned road projects.
“Odisha is having workload of about Rs 6000 crore and the state, at present, has engaged only 50 PIUs whose capacity is only Rs 3125 crore”, he pointed out.
Informing that the ministry had opened up habitations with a population of over 100 in the 18 Integrated Action Plan (IAP) districts for connectivity under PMGSY, Ramesh said the list of the most-affected blocks where the PMGSY projects for such habitations has been taken up, have already been shared with the state government.
He requested the Chief Minister to prepare the detailed project reports (DPRs) at the earliest so that they can be considered for clearance in the next couple of months.
Reminding Patnaik that Odisha has received substantial assistance from the Centre for construction of rural roads, Ramesh said around 13,000 km still remains to be sanctioned by his ministry, which is a challenge for both the state and the Centre to accomplish the task.