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PMGSY: Assam, M’laya fare badly

Staff Reporter
GUWAHATI, April 29: Construction of roads under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojona (PMGSY) lacks the required zeal in Assam which is lagging much behinds other States in the country, including most of its neighbours in the Northeast.
As in March 2018, Assam has completed 66 per cent of the total length of roads cleared under the scheme against the national completion rate of 82 per cent. Assam has also been beaten badly by many of its neighbouring States on this front, let alone States elsewhere in the country. Barring Manipur, Assam and Meghalaya are the poorest performers in the Northeast in implementation of road works under the PMGSY – both completing only 66 per cent each of the total sanctioned lengths for construction of roads.
The total length of sanctioned roads under PMGSY in Assam was 25,428.86 km. However, only 16,773.34 km road works has been completed by the State till March 2018, which is 66 per cent of the total length of roads sanctioned. In the past six years till February 2018 Assam constructed 1456.16 km in 2012-13, 957.96 km in 2013-14, 869.81 km in 2014-15, 477.63 km in 2015-16, 929.52 km in 2015-16 and 671.36 km till February in 2017-18. 
PMGSY in the State has covered 3,658 of the 7,383 cleared habitations in the State where as many as 3,658 habitations are yet to be covered.
Barring Manipur and Meghalaya, other States of the Northeast have performed fairly in the construction of PMGSY roads. Barring Manipur and Meghalaya that have constructed 62 per cent and 66 per cent respectively of the total lengths of PMGSY road sanctioned, rest of the States in the region performed better than Assam. Nagaland tops the list in the region with construction 90 per cent of total length of road constructed under PMGSY. It is followed by Tripura with 83 per cent, Sikkim with 73 per cent, Mizoram with 72 per cent and Arunachal Pradesh with 71 per cent.
Elsewhere in the country, Karnataka tops the list with 100 per cent construction of the total length of PMGSY roads sanctioned, followed by Haryana with 99 per cent, Gujarat with 98 per cent and Punjab with 95 per cent. At the bottom of the list is Jammu & Kashmir with just 55 per cent.
PMGSY is a one-time special intervention to provide single connectivity through all-weather roads to eligible unconnected habitations. In PMGSY, the unit taken into consideration is a habitation and not a village. The Government of India launched PMGSY on December 25, 2000 as a centrally-sponsored scheme under the Ministry of Rural Development. In Assam PMGSY is being implemented by the Department of Rural Development and the implementing agency is PWD.

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Ankur Kalita