SRINAGAR: “PM Modi’s inauguration of ZojilaTunnel is a good measure and good news for the people of Jammu and Kashmir especially for the people of Leh and Kargil regions. But, at the same time, it is an occasion to remind the people that the project was approved by UPA-II through a cabinet decision on 14 September 2012,” said senior Congress leader and former minister in Government of India Prof. Saifuddin Soz on Saturday.
In a statement, Soz said in a meeting with the then Minister of Road Transport and Highways C P Joshi, in 2012, it was decided that the BRO would provide the total project cost for Zojila and Z-Morh tunnels before 31 March 2012 and all formalities were completed within that time frame and the cabinet approved the project on 14 September 2012.
“All this was happening because of personal interest in the project taken by Rahul Gandhi,” Soz said. “The cabinet had approved an expenditure of Rs 9000 crore for Zojila and Rs 3000 crore for Z-Morh Tunnel.”
He said it was Rahul Gandhi who inaugurated Z- Morh Tunnel on 4 October 2012. “I was one of a dozen national and state public figures present on that occasion.”
The Congress leader said it was a normal practice those days for the incumbent government to make a reference to what had been envisaged and approved by the predecessor government. “Now, the practice is different as the hype is that nothing worth mention has been done in the past,” he said.