Maintaining that work culture in the country has undergone a sea change in the last 7-8 years and projects are now being cleared on need-based requirements rather than any other consideration, Union Minister Dr Jitendra Singh today emphasised that in sanctioning of new road projects, the priority is given to views of Sarpanches and other local elected representatives rather than to request made by local MPs or MLAs.

Dr Jitendra Singh informed that built at a cost of over Rs 547 crore, all-weather roads measuring up to 526 kilometres are likely to benefit a population of over one lakh 20,000 people, most of them living in far-flung hilly areas. He said, despite serious challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, barring few all the projects were completed within stipulated timeframe.

He said, roads are lifeline of a developing nation which will bring benefits in various sectors like education, health, marketing of agricultural produce and will bring many social benefits as well.

The Minister also reviewed the completion work of 22 bridges constructed at a cost of Rs 29.50 crores and the same will also be dedicated to the people soon.

The meeting was also attended by DC Kathua, Rahul Pandey, DC Udhampur, Krittika Jyotsna, DC Samba, Anuradha Gupta, DC Ramban, Mussarat Islam, DC Kishtwar, Ashok Kumar Sharma, DC Doda, Vikas Sharma and DC Reasi, Babila Rakwal.

It may be recalled that in September, 2020, Dr Jitendra Singh unveiled 23 roads and bridges projects in Kathua, Doda, Udhampur and Reasi districts in the Jammu region. The projects costing about Rs 73 crore and having length of 111 kilometres benefitted more than 35,000 people in the region. Twenty three projects included 15 roads built under PMGSY for all weather connectivity and 8 bridges for better connectivity to the people.