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Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY), is a flagship rural roads development programme of the Government of India for providing connectivity to unconnected habitations, based on census 2001. In the UTs of J&K and Ladakh, all unconnected habitations of population above 250, are eligible under the programme. In the UT of Jammu & Kashmir, 3,261 roads of length of 19,277 km and 243 bridges have been sanctioned, out of which 1,858 roads of length 11,517 km and 84 bridges have been completed. Similarly, in the UT of Ladakh, 142 roads of length of 1207 km and 3 bridges have been sanctioned, out of which 96 roads of length 699 km and 2 bridges have been completed till July 2020. Works for connecting 2,149 eligible unconnected habitations were sanctioned in the UT of Jammu and Kashmir, out of which 1,858 habitations have been connected. In the UT of Ladakh, works for 65 eligible habitations were sanctioned and 64 habitations have been already connected by July 2020, Ministry of Rural Development, Government of India has said.
Large number of sanctioned road works could not be started by August 2019, because of non- availability of clearance from forest department. However, substantial numbers of such pending cases have been resolved, and works have been awarded and started during last one year, with changes in the governance system. During last one year, 181 number of road works of length 1,292 km and 11 bridges have been completed, with an expenditure of more than Rs 715 crore.
Two cases of development of road works under PMGSY
Link Road from T03 to Stok (PMGSY Leh)
According to the ministry, the road proposed to village Stok in district Leh, takes off from km 2nd of Choglamsar Hemis road to Stok village for a length of 11.70 km benefitting a population of 1855, as per 2001 census. This scheme was sanctioned under PMGSYS-I, in the year 2018-19 (Phase XII). The earlier road was in a damaged condition and was not serving as all weather road. This road is being constructed by using plastic waste for the first time in the entire Leh district. In this technology, the waste plastic is used in shredded form, and is pushed into the hot mix plant over the heated aggregates. The plastic melts and coats the heated aggregates, before the aggregates are coated with hot bitumen. This technology will reduce the plastic waste and also strengthen the pavement structure of the road, by reducing the water absorption of aggregates.
This project was started in the year 2019 and length of 7 Km has been completed up to Bituminous Surface level and the balance length is in progress and shall be completed by October-2020. By upgradation of the road, the habitants of the village Stok will get all weather connectivity with the nearest market due to which the socio-economic conditions of the habitants will be improved. During summer, thousands of tourists go to this village to visit the Museum in Royal Palace, Stok Monastery and also the start point of the trek route to Stok Kangri which is a major tourist attraction.
Road from Supply More T03 to Kainthgali
This road takes off from Supply More Udhampur to Kainthgali village in district Udhampur, having length of 27 Km benefitting a population of 1,608 souls as per 2001 census. This project has been sanctioned under PMGSYS-I, Phase XII in the year 2018-19. The work had been awarded in October 2018. This project has been taken up for upgradtion in 2018-19, but work being slow due to various impediments and clearances. Now the work is in good pace and length of 11 Km has been completed up to BT status and the balance work up to BT status shall be completed by March-2021. By up-gradation and improvement of this road, the population of the five villages namely Dabreh, Krimachi, Mansar, Pathi, Kainthgali will be provided better connectivity to the nearest market and district headquarter at Udhampur, the ministry has further said.
With construction of such all weather roads, the socio-economic condition of the inhabitants of mentioned villages will certainly improve and the habitants will have better access to schools, healthcare centres and markets. There are some tourist spots near these roads and during summer, thousands of tourists go to tourist destinations such as Panchari, Stok Kangri, Stok Monastery which are surrounded with meadows of forest and mountains and during winters, snow-clad mountains and a picturesque landscape with the most scenic views reflects the nature’s beauty at its best. The road from supply more to Kainthgali also provides all weather road to a well known pilgrimage centre where lakhs of tourists visit every year. With construction of these roads, the inflow of tourists will certainly increase thereby improving the living standards of the inhabitants of the far-flung rural areas.