SRINAGAR: Chief Secretary Arun Kumar Mehta on Thursday chaired a high-level meeting to review the progress of various road projects in Jammu and Kashmir. Administrative Secretaries of Home, Power Development, Public Works (R&B), Mining, besides Divisional Commissioners of Kashmir/Jammu, officers from BRO, NHAI, NHIDCL and Deputy Commissioners participated in the meeting.
It was informed that the Mining department has allotted short-term permit for extracting the minor minerals to the executing agency to ensure continuous supply of construction material for the Jammu semi-ring road project.
It was further informed that NHAI has constructed crash barriers/parapets at all the critical stretches on Udhampur-Ramban section to prevent fatal accidents on the National Highway-44.
Dr Mehta directed the installation of such barriers on all critical stretches of Ramban-Banihal section within a week, especially in the areas prone to frequent landslides and slippages.
To facilitate smooth traffic flow on the Ramban-Banihal stretch of the National Highway, the traffic police and district administration were directed to properly demarcate single-lane driving zones and ensure lane-driving and traffic discipline among the commuters.
The Chief Secretary further directed the District Administration, Ramban to reduce response time to 15 minutes for clearing up traffic snarls on the highway by deploying adequate number of cranes, particularly on the under-construction stretches.
Mehta directed NHAI to operationalize 8 rest areas (wash rooms with mini eating joints) by 31st October and all 3 vehicle holding areas/parking bays on NH-44 by 30th November to provide ease of travel to the commuters.
He also directed the JKTDC to set up similar facilities on national highway for use by the public by 31st October.
The Chief Secretary also reviewed the progress on the Z-Morh tunnel; Srinagar-Shopian-Qazigund road; Srinagar semi-ring road project; Chenani-Sudmahadev-Goha road; Jammu-Akhnoor-Poonch road and the upcoming Delhi-Katra expressway and fixed specific timelines for their completion.
Mehta also reviewed the status of works on bridges like Noor Jahan bridge, Brazloo bridge, Gadora bridge among others and gave specific timelines for their operationalisation so that they could be dedicated to the people of the UT.
It was directed that the Srinagar-Shopian-Qazigund along with bypass should be made operational by July, 2022.
The Chief Secretary asked the DC, Udhampur to hand over the 3.3842 hectares land to the executing agency by 7th October, 2021 so that work on the Chenani- Sudhmahadev Goha road is commenced.
District administrations of Jammu and Samba and Kathua were directed to hand over the possession of land for Delhi Amritsar Katra express way to the executing agency by 1st November, 2021.
Mehta further directed that land acquisition for Z morh tunnel should be completed by 15th October 2021.
Similarly, the department was asked to make the Noor Jehan bridge trafficable by 31st December, 2021 besides readying Gadora bridge ready for inauguration by 1st January, 2021.
The Chief Secretary further directed that the condition of the road from Panthachowk to Badami Bagh cantonment should be improved by 15 October, 2021.
The Chief Secretary urged all the concerned Deputy Commissioners to expeditiously resolve all the land acquisition issues for construction work on the highway and complete the land acquisition early.