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Sunday, July 21, 2024

Nitin Gadkari Affirms: No Toll Roads Have Fully Recovered Capital Costs

In a statement on Thursday, Union Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari clarified that there are no toll-collecting national highways in India where the entire capital cost has been recuperated. Responding to a query in the Lok Sabha, Gadkari stated that there is no provision for shutting down user fee plazas once the concession period or capital cost recovery is completed, as per the rules outlined in the National Highways Fee (Determination of Rates and Collection) Rules, 2008.

Gadkari emphasized that, “There are no tolled national highways (Public/Private funded) in the country of which capital cost has been completely recovered.”

The responsibility for the construction of national highways and expressways lies with the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) and the National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation Ltd (NHIDCL).

Addressing another question, Gadkari informed that a road safety audit for all National Highways projects has become obligatory at every stage, including design, construction, operation, and maintenance. These audits are conducted by third-party auditors or experts.

In response to additional queries, Gadkari shared that the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has initiated 321 National Highway projects covering approximately 8,544 km, with a budget of Rs 1,49,758 crore. The focus of these projects is to enhance connectivity for important tourist and religious destinations.

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