By: Shruti Dube
Rs 2,500 crore were being sought from the World Bank for widening and upkeep of roads in the state, Chief Minsiter Virbhadra Singh had said in Rohru on April 15, Himachal Day, this year. And about Rs 2,000 crore were spent last year on such activities. But do I see that?
Of late I have been travelling places in Himachal and was surprised to see the condition of roads in the state. What I could conclude was that the border roads of the state are the worst. If you look at the road at Ambala- Kala Amb border, it is broken at many places and is a kaccha road. Almost a kilometre and a half drive is on a kaccha road. Also the road at Kalka-Parwanoo highway is in a bad condition. As such the traffic on Kalka-Parwanoo highway is heavy and now this broken road has made it worse. Himachal welcomes tourists and all into Himachal at Parwanoo with an extremely bad road. Though there have been announcements lately by the government that the road here will be widened up and repaired soon and a parking facility would be provided so as to shorten wait time to pay the toll-tax.
Also not to forget the road of famous Ridge Maidan in Shimla. A historic place where lots of tourists visit and the local people are seen in the evening. Even this road has started cracking at places. Road from Pinjore to Baddi, Nalagarh is another concern area. I think with Baddi being such an important and upcoming industrial area, this road really needs to be taken care of as roads are an important part of infrastructure for any developing area. I think government should look into the matter of roads in Himachal. As it is very important part of state infrastructure. Measures should be taken to get these roads mended and metalled.
The state has a network of about 25,600 km motorable road and 1 4,000 km tarred road length. In addition to about 1,200 km national highways, the state has 4,500 km state highways and major district roads, which link national highways to rural roads.
The state was adjudged 2nd in ‘Infrastructure building’ in a survey conducted by India Today, last year, but at the same time the infrastructure in place has to be maintained as well.
Let’s make these roads worth saying that men may come and men may go but I will go on forever.