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Focus on developing strategic infra: Govt to BRO

Government on Tuesday directed Border Roads Organisation (BRO) to focus on developing strategic infrastructure in border areas only and said it was contemplating to set up a different body to build roads in other areas.



New Delhi: Government on Tuesday directed Border
Roads Organisation (BRO) to focus on developing strategic
infrastructure in border areas only and said it was
contemplating to set up a different body to build roads in
other areas.

"BRO has been directed to focus on strategic
infrastructures in border areas and not to diffuse their
resources in other States for the time being," Defence
Minister A K Antony said here today.

He was speaking at a meeting of the Parliamentary
Consultative Committee for the Defence Ministry.

The Defence Minister added the government was
contemplating setting up another organisation to take care of
roads in other areas.

Recently, the BRO had decided to move out of the NH-16
project, which passes through the Naxal-affected areas in
Chhattisgarh.

Noting that BRO was is in the process of "transformation
and modernisation" and many important projects in various
stages of implementation, Antony said, "it will be our
endeavour to see that BRO’s capabilities are in consonance
with India`s strategic and developmental requirements."

BRO has been entrusted with construction of 61 roads with
a total length of 3,429 kms along the India-China border and
has a Long-term Perspective Plan Priority-I (LTTP-I) for
construction of 130 roads with a total length of 4,881 kms.

Under the LTPP-II, BROP plans to construct 255 roads with
and an all-weather road to Leh as well as 8.8 km long Rohtang
Tunnel.

Pointing out that Air Force`s air-lift assets were
overstretched, the Defence Minister said, "we have decided to
outsource air efforts, especially through rotary wing for
carrying of necessary equipment, plants, materials and
manpower (to difficult terrains)."

The BRO uses IAF`s Mi-17s for airlifting its heavy
machinery to difficult terrain and is looking to hire
Pawanhans helicopters for the purpose.

Commenting on the environmental clearances for BRO
projects, Antony said the Ministry has made substantial
headway in resolving the issue with the cooperation of
respective state governments and the Environment Ministry.

The Defence Minister said the manpower needs of the
BRO and "are being further augmented by recruitment of
officers through UPSC and other staffs through Ground Reserve
Engineering Force (GREF) Centre, Pune."

He said quality control set up and vigilance mechanisms
in BRO have been strengthened to bring about improvement in
work standards, ethics and transparency in the organisation.

PTI

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