Road projects will save nation from traffic congestion, pollution: Nitin Gadkari

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Union Road and Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari on Wednesday said the plethora of road and transport projects undertaken by the Centre would go a long way in saving the nation from traffic congestion and pollution.

Talking about the Dwarka Express Highway, work for which will begin in the next three to four months after land acquisition, Gadkari said, "Delhi will be saved from traffic congestion and pollution. The by-pass which we are making is expected to be completed by August 15. The Haryana Government which is constructing the extension of the bridge believes it to be completed by November. After the completion of these by-passes, ones travelling to Punjab, Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan will not have to enter Delhi."

Gadkari was briefing media on the sidelines of the India Integrated Transport and Logistics Summit being held here.

Elaborating further about developments in the transport sector, Gadkari said the government is giving priority to electric, ethanol, biodiesel and bio-CNG mode of vehicles.

"A lot of change in transport sector will be seen. We have given priority to electric, ethanol, biodiesel and bio-CNG. Under "Made in India and 'Make in India', lithium-ion battery backups would be manufactured in India. Dream of electric vehicles, electric car, electric taxis, electric bus is not far," he said.

Gadkari further said that 36 ring roads where logistics parks should be created have been identified in order to save cities from traffic congestion and pollution problems.

"The cities by the sides of roads face traffic congestion and pollution problems. This raises cost, pollution and creates inconvenience for people. For this, we have identified 36 ring roads where logistics park should be created," he said.

Shifting his focus to the port sector, the Minsiter said, "In the port sector, where we are making 40 river ports on the Ganga and three multi-nodal hubs, there, we are making bunkers. We have entered into a joint venture with Petronate Company. We will also be making our shipping L&G base. L&G, comparable with other fuels is cheaper and is the future fuel," he said.

"We are bringing new technologies for transport to be made in sea-sided places. We have already started giving contracts for port mechanisation and port modernisation in Sagarmala. We are going to spend Rs. 3 lakh crore for port-road and port- rail connectivity for which special planning is been done in Sagarmala," he added.

Gadkari claimed that his ministry has made a profit of Rs. 5,000 crores in the current year as compared to Rs. 4,000 crores last year.

"Our ministry made a profit of Rs. 4,000 crore last year, which has increased to Rs. 5,000 crore this year. That is why the most important sectors, transport and logistics, are needed to be worked upon," he said.

While emphasising on the importance of transport and logistics sector, Gadkari said the sector is expected to create job opportunities, increase export, fulfill the 'Make in India' and 'Made in India' dream and agricultural growth rate in the GDP will also see a rise.

"It is expected that all departments of the Indian Government and the private sector will attract Rs. 2 lakh crores worth investment in our sector," Gadkari said.

In conclusion, Gadkari hoped that the summit would turn out to be a successful event and help in bring about a revolution in the road and transport sector.

The IITLS, organised by the Ministry of Road Transport, Highways and Shipping and National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) in collaboration with Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), is being held at Vigyan Bhawan from May 3-5th. (ANI)
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