NEW DELHI || Ushering in a new revolution in the connectivity of roads and bridges in sensitive border areas close to the International Border (IB) and Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir, defence minister Rajnath Singh on Thursday dedicated six major bridges to the nation through video conferencing, an official said.
These bridges of strategic importance were completed by the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) in record time. The minister lauded all ranks of BRO for completing the works of six bridges in record time and complimented them for contributing towards nation building by working in the most difficult terrain and weather conditions.
The minister acknowledged that over the last two years, with the use of latest technologies and state-of-the-art equipment the BRO has done cutting of over 2,200 kilometres about 4,200 kilometres of roads surfacing and about 5,800 metres of permanent bridges have been constructed.
The two bridges on the Tarnah Nallah in Kathua District and four bridges located on Akhnoor-Pallanwala road in Akhnoor/Jammu district have spans ranging from 30 to 300 metres and were constructed at a total cost of Rs 43 crores. These bridges constructed by Project Sampark of the BRO will facilitate the movement of Armed Forces in this strategically important sector and will also contribute towards the overall economic growth of remote border areas.
It is apparent that there has been a major surge in outcomes delivered by the BRO in the last few years. This is evident from the fact that BRO has executed about 30 per cent more works in the financial year (FY) 2019-20 as compared to FY 2018-19. This has happened because of adequate budgetary support from the Government and due to the effect of structural reforms and focussed/dedicated efforts by the BRO.
The annual budget of the BRO that varied from Rs 3,300 crore to Rs 4,600 crore in the FY 2008-2016, saw a substantial rise to Rs 8,050 crore in FY 2019-2020. With the focus of the Government in improving infrastructure in border areas, the budget for FY 2020-2021 is likely to be Rs 11,800 crore. This will give a major boost to ongoing projects and will expedite the construction of strategic roads, bridges and tunnels along our northern borders.