Central nod for Rs 1702cr Bihar-Nepal Border Road

in Vihara

PATNA: The Union home ministry has approved the construction of 552-km long road along the Bihar-Nepal border, from Madanpur in UP to Galgalia in West Bengal. The Centre has agreed to sanction Rs 1,702 crore for this two-lane road to be completed by 2015-16. The total cost, however, will exceed Rs 2,552 crore. The Centre will make funds available to the state road construction department (RCD) for the construction and maintenance of the road, said RCD minister Nand Kishore Yadav. The state government will bear the cost of land acquisition as well as the construction of bridges and culverts on the entire stretch, he added. Under the Central government policy, roads along Indo-Nepal border have to be constructed in West Bengal, Sikkim, UP and Uttarakhand, apart from Bihar. "Bihar is the only state which made good progress and submitted DPR and the estimate to the Centre after it approved the project in December, 2010," Yadav said.

This road will pass through seven districts in Bihar namely East and West Champaran (184km), Sitamarhi (89), Madhubani (40), Supaul (41), Araria (104) and Kishanganj (98). The construction will not involve the national highways.

For the construction of bridges and culverts, the government will spend about Rs 1,400 crore which will be taken from Nabard as loan. For land acquisition and environment clearance, if necessary, the state government will have to spend from its own coffers, the minister said.

This would be an additional advantage for Bihar which now boasts of good connectivity. Chief minister Nitish Kumar had been putting pressure on the Centre for constructing roads along 726-km long porous Nepal border. The CM had pointed out that the border areas were beset with plethora of problems, including illegal infiltration, smuggling of narcotics, fake currency, human trafficking and other criminal activities.

Yadav said tenders would be floated after getting the proposal approved at the next cabinet meeting.

"The project is coming up as a new corridor, parallel to East-West corridor," RCD secretary Pratyaya Amrit said.

"The border road will help strengthen the presence and functioning of Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB). All the 191 SSB border outposts will be linked with this road even though at least 69 of them are a little far from the road which will be covered with link roads," Yadav said.

The border road's alignment will start from Gobarhia village on Bihar-UP border through Sahodra, Inarwa, Sikta (W Champaran), Raxaul and Guwabari (East Champaran), Basbitta, Sonbarsa, Sursand, Bhitta Mor (Sitamarhi), Akharaghat, Ladania, Lukaha, Laukahi, Jhorichowk, Kariauth, Andhramath, Bhutaha Chowk (Madhubani), Saraigarh, Bhimnagar, Birpur (Supaul), Refugee Colony, Jogbani, Kunwari Sikti (Araria), Fatehpur, Dubbatola, Peeltola (Kishanganj) and culminate at Galgalia on Bihar-West Bengal border.

Source: Times of India

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