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Business News/ News / India/  Centre working on policy to utilize municipal waste in road construction: Gadkari

Centre working on policy to utilize municipal waste in road construction: Gadkari

Gadkari asaid that the initiative aims to provide an innovative solution to waste management issues while saving costs

Union minister Nitin Gadkari.Premium
Union minister Nitin Gadkari.

New Delhi: Union Minister Nitin Gadkari on Wednesday said that the government is working on a policy to utilize municipal waste in road construction.

Address FICCI’s International Conference on Tunnel Construction, he said that the initiative aims to provide an innovative solution to waste management issues while saving costs.

Speaking about the growth of tunnelling projects in India, Gadkari noted that the country currently has 144 tunnels spanning a length of 357 km across national highways, with a total cost of 2 lakh crores. 

Out of these, 30 tunnels covering 45 kilometres are already in operation, while an additional 16 tunnels, adding up to about 120 kilometres, are under implementation and expected to be completed within the next one to two years. Furthermore, 54 tunnels are currently in the Detailed Project Report (DPR) stage.

“There is a huge potential for tunnelling in India," stated the minister, emphasizing the need for a professional sector study. He advocated for a transparent, time-bound, result-oriented, and corruption-free system, highlighting the importance of liberal, technical, and financial qualifications to ensure that India’s tunnel projects meet and exceed global standards. The aim is to incorporate innovative practices and cutting-edge technology in these projects.

S Paramasivan, Co-Chairman of Roads & Highways at FICCI Committee for Transport Infrastructure and Managing Director of Afcons Infrastructure, acknowledged the remarkable growth of tunnel construction in India over the past decade. He mentioned that tunnel construction is not limited to roads alone, encompassing various sectors such as railways, storage tanks, hydro dam tunnels, and more. Mr. Paramasivan expressed that this diversity has created a unique atmosphere for tunnelling in India.

India presently boasts approximately 1,641 ongoing tunnelling projects, covering nearly 3,445 kilometers. Notable projects include the Atal Tunnel, recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records as the longest tunnel above 10,000 feet altitude worldwide, and the Zojila Tunnel, projected to become the longest tunnel in Asia upon completion.

Mangu Singh, President of the Tunnelling Association of India, emphasized the need for advanced tunnelling techniques to support India’s expanding road, railway, and metro networks. He highlighted that tunnelling holds significant importance, particularly in the Himalayan and northeast regions of the country.

“The tunnelling industry has witnessed drastic advancements in technology, primarily focused on ensuring safety," Singh remarked.

Concluding the conference, Shailesh Pathak, Secretary General of FICCI, expressed optimism about India’s tunnelling industry, stating that the country’s tunnels, created over the next 25 years, will rival the best in the world. He commended the government for implementing positive and outcome-oriented policies.

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Published: 17 May 2023, 09:01 PM IST
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