70% Highway projects resume after partial lifting of lockdown

Economy


NEW DELHI: Work on about 70% highway projects has resumed from Monday with the government allowing partial lifting of the lock down for certain sectors amid the fight to contain the Covid-19 outbreak.

Permissions to resume construction have not come in for the Delhi- National Capital Region (NCR) as it remains among cities with the highest number of positive cases, an official said.

As the ministry of home affairs (MHA) made way for lifting curbs on certain sectors to get economic activity restarted, construction activity is still crawling, though it has started across various districts.

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“There are different issues cropping up at different project sites,” a second official from the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI), told ET.

Inter-state movement of new, additional labour is an issue where more labourers are needed, while at some project sites they are anticipating a shortage in inventory and raw materials, the official said.

“In the next fifteen days or so, if the situation gets better, they should have the inventory in place,” the official added.

Of around 375 projects for which permission was sought for resumption of works, 260 projects have got the go-ahead, the second official said.

“Our first priority was to get projects started, now we are hoping for things to streamline by the time we have a word on lifting of lockdown,” the first official said. Construction activities include roads, irrigation projects, buildings and all kinds of industrial projects; MSMEs are permitted in rural areas.



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