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Centre eyes 13,800 km target for building new highways in 2023-24

Photo for representation.

New Delhi : The central government has set a provisional target for the construction of about 13,800 kilometre National Highways (NHs) in 2023-24, Union Road and Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari informed Parliament on Thursday.

Against the set target for the year, 2,250 km has already been constructed till June 2023, he said.

The minister Gadkari was asked whether the construction material used for road construction was of better quality than that used earlier.

“Construction materials used for road construction work now is of better strength/quality as compared to those used earlier. A few examples are the soil of higher CBR, bitumen/modified bitumen of higher modulus, high strength concrete, high strength steel, etc,” Gadkari said in the written reply in Lok Sabha.

The total length of national highways in India increased by about 59 per cent in the past nine years – since the current government came into power, the minister earlier said and noted that the country now has the second-largest road network after the US as a result.

Addressing a press conference in New Delhi in late June, Gadkari said the total length of National Highways was 91,287 km in 2013-14, which has now increased to 145,240 km in 2022-23.

Further, Gadkari said with the introduction of FASTag, there has been a significant jump in toll collection. The minister further informed that the revenues from tolls rose to Rs 41,342 crore in 2022-23 from Rs 4,770 crore in 2013-14. The central government aims to increase the toll revenue to Rs 130,000 crore by 2030.

On green initiatives taken by the government, the minister pointed out that his Ministry has utilised 30 lakh tons of garbage in road construction for the Delhi Ring Road project, demonstrating a proactive approach towards waste management and sustainable infrastructure development.