Govt approves Rs 7,529-cr highway projects in Maharashtra

With an objective to expedite the improvement of infrastructure, the government has approved Rs 7,528.74 - crore projects for widening of stretches of NH 6 in Maharashtra under its flagship road building programme National Highways Development Project


NEW DELHI, June 17: The government today approved Rs 7,528.74-crore projects in Maharashtra for widening of stretches of NH 6 under its flagship road building programme National Highways Development Project (NHDP). "The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has given its approval for development of the four laning of the Amravati-Chikhli, Chikhli-Fagne and Fagne-Gujarat/Maharashtra border sections of National Highway-6 in Maharashtra," an official statement said. The three projects, earlier in two packages - Amravati-Jalgaon and Jalgaon-Gujarat/Maharashtra border - were approved by the erstwhile Cabinet Committee on Infrastructure in March 2012 and awarded to Larsen & Toubro Infrastructure at a premium of Rs 131.04 crore and Rs 145.08 crore, respectively. The developer had fulfilled a majority of its conditions, but National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) could not procure 80 percent of land after 380 days of signing of the Concession Agreement. "Due to increase in cost, the Concessionaire expressed inability to continue the projects. Accordingly, the projects were terminated with mutual consent with forfeiture of bids security equivalent to one per cent of total project cost (TPC)," the statement read. Subsequently, it was decided to implement both projects by converting them into three packages, it added. The three projects approved today pertain to widening of 485 km under the NHDP phase IV in BOT (toll) mode on Design, Build, Finance, Operate and Transfer (BOT/DBFOT) basis. The projects include four-laning of 194 km stretch of Amravati-Chikhli at an estimated cost of Rs 2,754 crore, the statement said, adding that 150 km of Chikhli-Fagne will be widened at a cost of Rs 2,453 crore. The remaining 141 km of Fagne-Gujarat/Maharashtra border on NH-6 will be widened to four lanes at an estimated expense of Rs 2,322 crore. "The main object of the project is to expedite the improvement of infrastructure in Maharashtra and also reduce the time and cost of travel for traffic, particularly heavy traffic, plying between Amravati-Chikhli-Fagne-Gujarat/ Maharashtra border section of NH-6 in Maharashtra," the statement said.