NHAI said that despite the disruption caused by Covid-19 pandemic, it has awarded these 40 projects that would entail a capital cost of Rs 47,289 crore. The length of the projects awarded in April-September is 60% higher than the 828 km ordered in the same period a year ago.
“For the awarded projects, NHAI has already completed at least 80% to 90% of the land acquisition, actioned utilities shifting and has obtained required clearances from various forest and environment authorities,” NHAI said in a press statement.
Traditionally, the ordering activity picks up in the second half of the year.
The central agency, which develops, maintains and manages the national highways, said it disbursed Rs 10,000 crores through online payments in March and ensured that no payments remain pending due to closure of office during the lockdown. In the fApril-June quarter, NHAI disbursed over Rs 15,000 crores to the vendors.
“Steps such as monthly payments to the contractors were taken to ensure cash flow to the contractors. Such moderations will result in a spiraling effect not only on the growth of the road sector but will also play a critical role in nation building and advancing the growth of the Indian economy,” NHAI said in the statement.
The agency said that it is committed to improve ease of doing business and facilitate better working relationships with all its stakeholders.
In June, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari had said that the government is taking steps to revamp the NHAI and plans more large-scale to boost road construction in the country.