J&K road network to be equivalent to America’s in 3-4 years: Nitin Gadkari

SRINAGAR — In the next 3-4 years, the roads of Jammu and Kashmir will be made equivalent to American roads, said Union Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari here on Monday.

“We are working on such a mission that in the coming three-four years we will make the Jammu and Kashmir road network equivalent to that of America,” Union Minister Gadkari said at a press briefing here.

The Union Minister is on a two-day-long visit to the Union Territory.

He said that a four-lane Greenfield Expressway, connecting Delhi-Katra, will also be made, which will reduce the distance between the two cities by 58 Km.

“A total of 32 Green Express Highways are being built, the most important of which is Delhi- Amritsar-Katra Greenfield. This 670 km four-lane Green Field Expressway from Delhi to Vaishno Devi Dham, Katra will be completed by December 2023 at a cost of 37,524 crores,” Nitin Gadkari said.

“Presently the distance from Delhi to Katra is 727 km, this expressway will reduce the distance by 58 km. With this, there is a possibility that the distance between Delhi-Amritsar, Delhi-Katra, and Delhi-Srinagar will be covered in 4 hours, 6 hours, and 8 hours respectively,” he added.

Gadkari said that we have also taken up a work of a 78 Km four-lane Srinagar ring road, a Rs 4,660 crore worth project, which will be completed in 2023-24.

“With the construction of this ring road, the people, coming to Baramulla, Kupwara, Bandipora, Gurez, Kargil, and Leh, will not have to come inside Srinagar city. This will reduce the traffic congestion and pollution in the city,” Gadkari said further.

Earlier in the day, the Union Minister accompanied by Jammu and Kashmir LG Manoj Sinha visited ‘Asia’s largest tunnel’, Zojila Tunnel, to inspect the ongoing work.

“With the construction of this tunnel, tourism will increase by 2-3 times and employment opportunities will also grow in Jammu and Kashmir,” said Gadkari.

“We will achieve connectivity between Kashmir to Kanyakumari in the true sense,” he added.

Gadkari in a tweet said that as many as 19 tunnels are being constructed in Jammu and Kashmir at a cost of Rs 25,000 crore.

The transport minister further said that with the construction of this tunnel, there will be all-weather connectivity for Ladakh. — (ANI)