On Friday, Transport Secretary Anurag Jain said that the 1,400 km stretch of Delhi-Mumbai Expressway will be operational by March. The portion up to Mumbai, except JNPT connectivity, will be completed by December. Jain said that JNTP connectivity will be completed by March next year.
The government is aiming to commission the Delhi-Surat section of the Delhi-Mumbai Expressway by March, with two additional sections almost ready, covering a distance of over 300 km.
“Delhi-Surat connectivity will be provided by March this year, without a tunnel around it,” says Jain. By December the entire area will be connected up to Mumbai. By March next year we will add JNPt.
It is noteworthy that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had inaugurated the 246 km long section of Delhi-Dausa-Lalsot Expressway in February last year. The Delhi-Mumbai Expressway, which is being built at a cost of Rs 1,05,000 crore, is the longest highway in the country. It has four parts. The travel time to Mumbai via the expressway is expected to be halved to 12 hours from the current 24 hours.
Jain also said the government is working to build a network of 50,000 km of access-controlled highways by 2047. We currently have a network of access-controlled highways, which is 4,000 km long. We will reach 10,000 if there are some projects in hand. Of such highways, says Kimi Jain, by 2047 we will have to compete with the infrastructure of developed countries.
By 2047, our network will have 50,000 km of access-controlled highways. This is our opinion. There will be a network across the country as road users will get one or more access-controlled highway connectivity, says Jain.
Another important aspect of the approach is that no national highway should be less than two-lane paved, except in hilly areas. Our aim is zero complaints, hence we have introduced maintenance system. “We have introduced 95 per cent short-term maintenance contracts for this, which are not covered under any concession agreement,” says Jain.
He added that by 2025 a 94 km stretch from Mumbai to Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust will be ready.
An additional stretch of about 205 km between Lalsot and Jhalawar has been completed. There are nine packages between Lalsot and Rajasthan-Madhya Pradesh border, out of which two packages covering a distance of 79 km have been completely completed. More than 90% work on the remaining 66 km has been completed. Work on additional 60 km has been completed on time by more than 80 percent.
Two sections are most important. Progress is a little slow in the 35 km area. One of the two is 26 km, where 75% work has been completed, and the other is 8 km, where there is 45% progress.