IMPHAL, February 29: Manipur will soon have a six-lane highway of international standard, Works minister Dr Kh Ratankumar Singh today declared while laying foundation stone of the Haotabi Kyamgei Bailey Bridge.
The minister said a six-lane National Highway will soon connect Imphal and Haflong in Assam via Kangchup, Tamenglong and Tousem.
After the foundation stone was laid, a ceremonial function was held at river bank of Imphal River at Arapti Haotabi Kyamgei.
Speaking as the chief guest, the Works minister said the project will be the largest project of the State PWD and will be undertaken at the cost of Rs 1200 crores.
He stressed further that the Asian Development Bank and South Asia and South East Connectivity have already sanctioned the fund and the State government has already tendered the technical and financial bids for a capable company.
The project will be initiated once the ongoing Budget session of the Manipur Legislative Assembly concludes, he added.
Once the highway is completed, it will shortened the Imphal to Jiribam stretch by atleast 40-45 km while the Imphal to Guwahati will be shortened by atleast 90 km, the minister elaborated.
He continued it will also be one of the most important roads of the State. He further appealed to all concerned to extend co-operation in the developmental works under taken in the State.
The minister also said the decision to construct the bailey bridge was taken by the department under the initiative of the Chief Minister.
He said the bridge which will cost at least Rs 493.67 lakhs, will improve connectivity, communication in the neighbouring areas and at the same time bring development to not just the locality, but the entire State.
He further lauded the local MLA Karam Thamarjit for his enthusiasm and initiative in the construction of the bridge.
He said the target is to complete the foundation of the bridge before the arrival of the monsoon and to complete the entire bridge within 18 months, as the other components of the bridge other than the foundation could be installed even during the monsoon.
He stressed that the Works department will target to complete the construction before the 2017 general election which is before the stipulated time for completion.
He continued Rs 1 crore for the construction of the bridge will be allotted from the current financial year 2015-16 while the remaining amount wil be sanctioned in the next FY 2016-17.
The minister also announced that there are major projects in the pipeline to upgrade the national highways and State highways in the State.
He elaborated the Imphal Dimapur and the Imphal Jiribam national highways will soon be expanded and the State Highway connecting Wangjing to Khudengthabi crossing Machikhul will also be soon constructed.
The minister also claimed that the permanent bridges along the Imphal-Jiribam highway will soon be constructed at Makru and Barak.
The foundation laying ceremony was also attended by MLA Kerao A/c K Thamarjit Singh, PWD Chief Engineer M Lokendro Singh, other officials and local leaders.