The State Government will transfer 2,000 km of national highways to the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) within the next two years for widening, according to N. Lakshman Rao Peshve, Secretary, Public Works Department.

They would be transferred in a phased manner for upgrading them into four-lane roads and maintaining them, he said and added that so far, 1,500 km of national highways had been handed over to the NHAI.

Roads in the State have been categorised into village roads, major district roads (MDRs), State highways and national highways.

Mr. Peshve said that the State Cabinet had recently decided not to declare village roads as MDRs and the latter as State highways in future unless they are physically upgraded to the specified standards.

He said that the State had 53,000 km of MDRs and 21,000 km of State highways. Only 8,000 km of State highways were two-lane, he said.

The State proposed to upgrade the remaining stretches of State highways into two lanes in a phased manner with external funds and under public-private partnership. Stretches with high traffic flow would be developed first.

The State was likely to get World Bank aid for widening 826 km of State highways and Asian Development Bank funds to widen 650 km of State highways in this fiscal.

It had been proposed to widen 1,300 km of State highways under the PPP model, he said.

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