Budget 2016: Govt gives a boost to rail, road and air connectivity

New Delhi: Focusing on infrastructural development and increasing rail, road and air connectivity, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in his Budget speech announced building of 10,000 kms of national highways and up-gradation of 50,000 kms of state highways as national highways in 2016-17.

In a big push towards achieving regional air connectivity, Jaitley announced to develop 160 non-functional airports across the country.

“160 airports and airstrips can be revived at a cost of Rs 50-100 Crore each,” FM Jaitley said, while adding that, “10 of 25 defunct airstrips will be developed in partnership with state government.”

The low cost of flying would help improve regional connectivity and help the government achieve the government's scheme to regional flying at a cost of Rs. 2,500 per hour flight.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley also announced that 85 percent of the stuck road projects will be put on fast track mode and 65 eligible habitats will be connected via 2.23 lakh kms of road.

The Finance Minister said that a sum of 97,000 has been allocated for the development of roadways including rural roads.

“I have proposed to allocate a sum of Rs 55000 crore in #UnionBudget2016 for roads and highways,” he said while adding that the investment will 'be further topped up by additional 15000cr, which will be raised by National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) through bonds.'

“Total allocation for road and rail in 2016-17 is Rs 2.18 lakh crore,” Jaitley said during his speech in the Parliament.

News24 Bureau