Special Correspondent

  • Shiradi Ghat road to have a 75-mm thick bitumen layer
  • There is delay in using funds released by the Centre

    Bangalore: Union Minister of State for Roads and Transport K.H. Muniyappa said on Friday that the State Government was involved in the maintenance of national highways and had to share the responsibility for the bad condition of certain roads passing through the Western Ghats in the State.

    Addressing presspersons here, he referred to the bad condition of the national highway between Sakleshpur and Mangalore and said of the 130-km road, one stretch was being improved under a port connectivity programme by the National Highways Authority of India. For permanent restoration of the Shiradi Ghat section road, the Union Government had sanctioned Rs. 26 crore. The Shiradi Ghat road would have a 75-mm thick bitumen layer.

    "There are load-bearing norms related to roads of specific kinds and frequent passage by very heavy vehicles may damage road surfaces. It is up to the State Government to regulate traffic on such roads,'' Mr. Muniyappa said.

    Many MPs and Union Ministers from the region had complained about the bad condition of roads on the ghat sections and the mater was being taken seriously, he said. However, there was delay on the part of the State Government in utilising funds released by the Centre. For maintenance and repair of roads, including those on the ghat sections, specific funds had been given. "Of the Rs. 85 crore sanctioned in 2005-06, the State has spent only Rs. 42 crore, and in 2006-07 of the Rs. 35.88 crore sanctioned, only Rs. 12 crore has been spent. It is up to the State Government to send proposals and use the funds released," he said. The road between Mangalore-Kerala and Karwar-Goa border had to be widened and work on it was in progress, he said.