Source: News Bharati English05 May 2016 15:11:52

New Delhi, May 5: Union Rural Development Minister Birender Singh has agreed to relax Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) norms to boost the rural road network in Arunachal Pradesh. The Union Minister gave his node for relaxation on population norm for faster road connectivity when Chief Minister Kalikho Pul along with Union Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju called on him and discussed various issues related to road connectivity in the state under the flagship programme “Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana” (PMGSY).
Pul in his comprehensive presentation explained to the RD Minister for special exemption on population norms for faster connectivity in the state of Arunachal Pradesh being strategically located with hostile terrain and difficult geographical conditions. The Union Minister for Home Affairs also pushed for the demand of special dispensation in PMGSY to the state along with the Chief Minister.

Singh agreed to relax the existing norms on population from 250+ to 100+ in a cluster mode, for which the notification will be issued soon by the GOI. On the demand of long span bridges upto 200 metres on the rivers of Siang, Subansiri, Kameng, Lohit and Dibang, the Minister RD agreed to consider the same for which a technical team from the Ministry will visit these areas to assess the actual requirement and suggest appropriate technology for construction of such long span bridges in forward areas.

Pul during the discussion with Birendra Singh pushed for border area connectivity within 50 kms from international border and the latter agreed to consider one-time relaxation in the population norms under PMGSY to provide connectivity to the villages in the border areas (Indo-China) situated at aerial distance of 20 kms. The state government accordingly will submit a proposal soon. The RD Minister also asked the state to use the roads being constructed by the MHA in border areas for border guarding force as take-off point for connectivity to the habitations located on international borders.

The Minister RD agreed to enhance the allocation under PMGSY during RE stage on the request of CM from Rs 468 crore to 1100 crore, during the current year, in view of the enhanced target of the state for construction of 1000 km of road works and based on the performance, news agency The Arunachal Times reporetd.

Pul also apprised Singh about the higher construction cost in remote areas with difficult and complex terrain. For qualitative construction, there should not be any comparison in cost with other states in view of the existing site conditions.