566 NH projects running behind schedule: Gadkari

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The government on Thursday said 566 national highway projects are running behind schedule and no project has been put on hold.

The delays are mainly on account of issues in land acquisition and getting the environment, forest and wildlife clearances, and disputes in arbitration, Road Transport, and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari said in a reply to a question in the Lok Sabha.

To fast-track these projects, various steps such as streamlining of land acquisition and environment clearances, premium re-scheduling, close coordination with other ministries, revamping of dispute resolution mechanism, frequent review meetings with project developers, state government and contractors at various levels have been taken, the minister said.

"Delay in completion leads to cost overrun in some projects," he said.

In a separate reply, the minister said that to overcome the problem, "it has been now decided that projects are awarded only when 90 percent of the land required is available and all the statutory clearances have been obtained".

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