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January 10, 2019

Directive to complete work on roads in Punjab


January 10, 2019

LAHORE: Punjab Finance Minister Hashim Jawan Bakht on Wednesday directed the authorities concerned to complete the under-construction roads first after categorising the new and old projects under the Rural Access Road Programme.

Chairing a meeting of Steering Committee constituted by the chief minister for implementation of the programme, the provincial finance minister said that social and economic factors must also be kept in view while constructing the link roads. According to the availability of land, he said, widening of the roads could be considered for villages having greater traffic load.

Hashim Jawan said that PTI’s Rural Access Road Programme was not only confined to facilitate the farmers to have an easy access to markets but also to ensure smooth travel among the populated areas.

He said a revenue generation strategy was also inevitable to make the projects economically viable so that repair and maintenance of the roads could not become difficult in future. The task would continue in accordance with the set mechanism, he said.

Financial frame work for the developmental projects is as important as their operational frame work, he said, adding the PTI government wanted to put in place a coordinated and comprehensive development strategy that would also prove beneficial for its successors.

“Apart from governance, our motto is also to streamline the administrative affairs,” he said. Punjab Communication Minister Sardar Asif Nakai stressed the need for determining the time period for the repair works to ensure durability of the roads.

Punjab Communication and Works Department Secretary Shehryar Sultan briefed the steering committee on the salient features, including the cost estimates and the budget allocated for the programme. He said the chief minister had approved the Rural Access Road Programme worth Rs 15 billion, and a grant of Rs 5 billion had been allocated in the current fiscal year.

The meeting participants also gave suggestions for the proposed method for allocation of budget to districts under the programme, width of the roads and their repair work. The provincial finance minister also directed the Local Government Department and Communication and Works Department to ensure monitoring during implementation of every phase of the programme.

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