The central government has budgeted an amount of Rs. 3,000 crore for highway projects in the northeast region during the current year. The outlay is part of the Rs. 37,880 crore set aside for road construction in Budget 2014-15. The government also plans to set up a special corporation to undertake road projects in the seven northeastern states of Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura, Manipur and Nagaland, and Sikkim.
The new road development in the northeast will strengthen infrastructure and connect the border areas as well as promote tourism in the region.
NHAI has already taken up the development of about 670 km of East-West Corridor in Assam. Out of this about 540 km has been completed and the remaining length is targeted for completion by June 2015.
Besides, NHAI has also taken up about 215 km of NH-40 & NH-44 in Meghalaya under the Special Accelerated Road Development Programme for North-East. It has completed about 93 km so far. Further, a total length of about 94 km of NH-36 & NH-39 has been taken up in Nagaland under SARDP-NE.
The Special Accelerated Road Development Programme for North-East includes the upgradation of 10,141 km of national highways and state roads, the upgradation of national highways connecting state capitals to four lanes or two lanes, and providing connectivity to all 88 district headquarter towns of the northeast region by at least two-lane roads.
So far, approval for 2/4 laning of 6,418 km of various categories of roads under Phase A and Arunachal Package of SARDP-NE in the entire northeast, costing an estimated Rs. 33,500 crore, has been given. The two projects are expected to be completed by March 2017 and March 2018 respectively.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways and Shipping has announced road building works of around Rs. 20,000 crore in Ladakh region of Jammu & Kashmir. A tunnel alone is expected to cost Rs. 10,000 crore.