Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh today sought early clearance of Shahpur-Kandi dam project and requested to put this project in fast track priority projects maintaining 90:10 ratio.Captain Amarinder Singh raised this issue during his meeting with the Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari here today this afternoon and stated that early sanction and completion of Shahpur-Kandi dam was imperative for the agriculture state of Punjab. He said that that with declining ground water level in most of the districts of Punjab, Union Government has to take initiative to maintain the irrigation potential of the feeding bowl of the country so that agricultural productivity could pace with the rising population of the country.
Also seeking the early clearance of the lining project of Sirhind feeder and Rajasthan feeder canal, Punjab Chief Minister apprised Gadkari that he had already requested the PMO to bring both canals in priority list to enable Central funding under PMKSY.The Chief Minister, who was accompanied by Revenue Minister Sukhbinder Singh Sarkaria and Public Works Minister Vijay Inder Singla, observed that due to absence of lining, Malwa region of Punjab was facing the acute problem of water-logging besides water was not reaching at the tail end. He said it was out national duty to check the seepage of precious water and to ensure 100% canal irrigation especially to farmers at tail-end.
Urging the Union Government to initiate measures to sanction funds at the earliest, Captain Amarinder Singh suggested to include these two projects into the national scheme of PMKSY.Emphasising the necessity for early resumption of the Shahpur Kandi Dam project, Chief Minister urged the Central Government to ask the J&K Govt. to adhere to the March 31, 2017 agreement with the approved 90:10 norms instead of 60:40 as was now proposed. Resumption of work was under consideration of the Punjab Government, he said while seeking approval of Revised Cost Estimate of Rs. 2738 Crores for the project.With the acceptance of above proposals by the Ministry of WR, RD and GR, Govt. of India, the water going down stream of Madhopur Head Works to Pakistan shall be stopped, Captain Amarinder Singh further pointed out.In the meeting, the Chief Minister also sought the inclusion of 13 road projects across the state in Bharat Mala Pariyojna besides declaration of 7 new road projects as National Highways.He said that Union Minister's intervention in the matter was necessary to facilitate better connectivity and smooth commute for the people of Punjab.
Captain Amarinder Singh also flagged the issue of connectivity of industrial city of Mandi Gobindgarh with economic corridor, at the cost of Rs. 800 Crores. It may be added that the Central Govt. is developing economic corridors, inter corridors and feeder routes under Bharat Mala Pariyojna. The Chief Minister informed Gadkari that in Punjab economic corridor of Ajmer-Ludhiana passing through Malerkotla-Sangrur-Sunam-Moonak have already been approved and connecting Mandi Gobindgarh to this critical corridor would give a fillip to steel industry.The Chief Minister also urged the Union Minister to take up the Delhi Katra Expressway via Amritsar as a greenfield project for which consent for alignment has already been given by the State.The Chief Minister suggested that direct connectivity can be provided near Sangrur through a feeder route via Amloh-Babarpur-Chhintanwala-Balwan.Prominent among others who were present during the meeting included Chief Secretary Karan Avtar Singh, Principal Secretary to CM Tejveer Singh, Secretary Irrigation Jaspal Singh, Secretary PWD Hussan Lal, Resident Commissioner, Punjab Bhawan New Delhi Rakhee Bhandari.