The Road Transport and Highways Ministry constructed 13,327 km of National Highways in 2020-21, Parliament was told on Thursday. In a written reply to the Lok Sabha, Nitin Gadkari said to decrease the Covid-19 pandemic effect; his ministry took actions under Atmanirbhar Bharat. It provided several Covid-19 relief measures to contractors, concessionaires and consultants, including the extension of time for 3-9 months.
He also said that the cost of ongoing projects might increase due to site, local and project-specific factors or other factors, including price increase during the project time cycle. In BOT projects, increase the concessionaire absorbs the cost. In contrast, in other projects, price escalation is payable as per contract conditions, and the actual value of price escalation and inter-alia the substantial increase in project cost, if any, is known only on actual completion of the project and final settlement of bills.
“Once Bharatmala Pariyojana is executed, it is imagined that the National Highway network of length 70,000+ km will have a consistent four-lane or above infrastructure,” he said. Bharatmala Pariyojana Phase–I involves the development of about 24,800 km NH network such as Economic corridors, Inter-corridor & feeder roads, National Corridors Efficiency Improvements, Border and International Connectivity roads, Coastal and Port Connectivity roads, Expressways as well as 10,000 km of roads under balance NHDP.