Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari on Thursday spoke about the discontinuation of the road project linking Nagpur passing through Kamptee Cantonment. He stated that the contractors involved in the project were made to flee and then referred to the delay in getting several clearances asserting that the atmosphere was such that people did not push for completing work but wanted to stop it. Gadkari's remarks were followed by the questions raised by Shiv Sena member Arvind Sawant.
Making the official announcement, Gadkari said, "Once the compound wall raised, their landmark has ended. The land is of NHAI. The defence (ministry) has stopped work for one year. We said why did you not construct boundary ahead if it was your land."
Gadkari also spoke about the meetings chaired with the concerned authorities before the personnel came with a gun and made the contractor flee. Gadkari said that he has given these subjects to Defence Minister Rajnath Singh for the past one-and-a-half months. Further referring to efforts made to procure land to expand at Dhalakuan, Gadkari said,
"It is not an appropriate word, but 'kitne papad belne pade' (we had to slog it out)," he said. Gadkari said the work is getting delayed even though the government was the same. He said a delay in land acquisition increases the cost of projects. "The contractor cannot work in the air. It takes six-six months for permission to cut trees... the atmosphere is that nobody comes to you saying do the work but they do come to stop it," he said.
Nitin Gadkari, however, ensured that the project will start and all encroachments will be removed. Further answering the questions on land acquisition for a road linking Mumbai to Goa he said there were problems concerning land acquisition for a road linking Mumbai to Goa. However, he said land acquisition has been almost finished and the work will be completed in one year.
(With Inputs from ANI)