A provision of cross drainage should be made as integral part of approval of roads as it has been observed that roads get damaged due to poor drainage facilities besides making adequate enhancements in budget for construction of jeep-able roads to connect to maximum villages of the State.This was stated by the Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur while presiding over the review meeting of the State Public Works Department here today.Jai Ram Thakur said that PMGSY was proving a vital programme for ensuring road connectivity to the rural areas of the State. He said that time bound completion of all the roads projects being executed under PMGSY must be ensured. Any delay in this regard would be viewed seriously and responsibility of executing officers would be fixed.He said that target has been fixed for construction of 2520 km new roads under PMGSY and 77 habitations would be provided road connectivity under this scheme during the current year. He said that time bound execution of all the clearance and approval must also be ensured in respect of various projects under PMGSY. It was informed in the meeting that 1250 kms new roads would be constructed under PMGSY-II.Chief Minister said that the targets must be achieved within the stipulated time period. He said that designs of roads should be in such a way in it becomes commuters delight besides minimum damages caused to fragile ecology of the Himalayas. He said that as many as 4115 black spots have been rectified in the State by constructing retaining walls, crash barriers and parapets etc. All the new roads in the State would be passed only after road safety audit is carried out by independent agency. He said that in future road safety audit would be integral part of DPRs.
Jai Ram Thakur said that a nodal officer in the rank of Chief Engineer should be designated for expediting various forest clearances for various ongoing projects as this delays the project and results in price escalation.Chief Minister said that the Himachal Pradesh Road Infrastructure Development Corporation would be strengthened for ensuring proper maintenance and upkeep of major district roads, preparing action plan to improve geometrics by improving intersections and going for tunnels as well as to enhance riding quality of roads. He also stressed to take steps to review and streamline the existing procedure of procurement to reduce the time lag between sanction and award of works.He said that out of the 69 national highways approved by Central Government for the State, in principle Detailed Project Reports (DPRs) of 63 National Highways of 4031 kms. have been prepared by the State Public Works Department and in principle DPRs of three national highways with total length of 170 kms. have been prepared by NHIDCL.While laying stress on ensuring quality work while executing various developmental projects, the Chief Minister said that department must use local architect and traditional technical knowhow while constructing buildings. He said that new OPD of IGMC must be completed at the earliest to facilitate the people of the State.It was informed in the meeting that out of total 3226 panchayats in the State, 3131 panchayats have been connected with the roads besides providing road facilities to 13782 habitations out of 18711 habitations.Principal Secretary Public Works Department J.C. Sharma assured the Chief Minister that the Department would work with greater zeal and dedication to come upto his expectations.Additional Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister Sanjay Kundu, Engineer-in-Chief PWD, R.K. Verma, Director Industries Hans Raj Sharma, Special Secretary PWD D.C. Negi, Chief Engineer Lalit Bhushan Sharma and other senior officers were present in the meeting.