Asian Development Bank funds for rural road connectivity in Jharkhand

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RANCHI: Jharkhand government on Friday signed a project agreement with Asian Development Bank to finance four big road construction projects to extend road connectivity in state’s countryside.

The $200 million (Rs 1500 crore) agreement would fund Khunti-Tamar (43.7km), Govindpur-Tundi-Giridih (43.5km), Giridih-Jamua-Sharvan (45.2km) and Dumka-Hansdiha (44.2km) road projects. After the project agreement, work on the already sanctioned projects would begin at a fast pace.Road construction department secretary Mast Ram Meena, part of Jharkhand team that signed the agreement, said Asian Development Bank (ADB) would supervise the projects under the agreement. “The project agreement would facilitate the construction of better quality roads and connect vast areas with quality road networks,” said Meena.

The completion of the four projects would mark a milestone in the progress of the state where many regions still lie outside the metaled road networks. The four projects would connect major population areas of Khunti, Ranchi (rural), Dhanbad, Giridih, and Dumka, the districts which have been demanding better road connectivity since the state was created in 2000.

In Dumka and Khunti – which house sizable tribal population – the roads, a road construction department official said, would bring economic rewards for people who currently face trouble in business and transportation due to poor road connectivity.

The tenders have already been floated and contractors selected for the projects. All the four roads would be two-lane and will have more than seven meters wide carriageway.

The roads would stimulate business activities in the areas it would connect. “The roads would push the rate of economic development in these areas,” a government report said.
In north block (Delhi) the agreement was inked between chief secretary Rajbala Verma and ADB country director Teresa Kho. Besides the projects agreement with Jharkhand, ADB also signed a loan agreement with central government, a state government report said.
The road projects are located in areas which constitute the core of the CPI(Maoist) domination zone in Jharkhand. Besides stimulating economic activities, the road projects (after completion) would also make security personnel movement to remote parts easy and safe.

Source:The Times of India
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