ECNEC Approves Tk 5,906cr Project to Repair Rural Infrastructures

The Government today approved a Taka 5 905.59-crore project aimed at maintaining the rural road network system by rehabilitating the highways, bridges and culverts damaged by cyclone Amphan, heavy rain and recent floods.   

The approval came from the 15th meeting of the ECNEC of the current fiscal year (FY21), which was also the 48th meeting of the current government of the ECNEC, reports BSS.

ECNEC Chairperson and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina presided over the meeting virtually from her official Ganobhaban residence. Concerned ministers, state ministers and secretaries joined the meeting from the NEC Conference Room in the city’s Sher-e-Bangla Nagar area.

Briefing reporters after the meeting virtually, Senior Secretary of the Planning Division Md Ashadul Islam informed that the ECNEC meeting today approved a total of five projects involving an overall estimated cost of Taka 7,505.29 crore.

Revealing the project's specifics, Planning Commission member Md Zakir Hossain Akand said the Local Government Engineering Department (LGED) under the Local Government Division will implement by December 2023 the project entitled "Rehabilitation of rural road infrastructures affected by cyclone Amphan and Flood" at an approximate cost of Taka 5,905.59 crore with the entire government budget.

He said, “The project will be implemented at 355 upazilas under 55 districts of the country.”

Zakir, member of the Division of Agriculture, Water Resources and Rural Institutions of the Planning Commission, stated that, taking into account the extent of the damage caused by the cyclone Amphan and the recent floods, the project for the rehabilitation of the rural roads, culverts and bridges affected was created.

The goal of the project is to minimize transport costs and time by ensuring a sustainable road maintenance system, simplifying the marketing system for different goods, creating more rural jobs and thus keeping the rural economy operational. 

The project area covers cyclone Amphan affected 69 upazilas under 14 districts of Khulna, Barishal, Chattogram and Dhaka Divisions, flood affected 182 upazilas under 28 districts of Rangpur, Rajshahi, Khulna, Dhaka, Mymensingh, Sylhet and Chattogram divisions.

Besides, the project area also covers some 139 upazilas under 22 districts of Rajshahi, Khulna, Dhaka, Mymensingh and Chattogram divisions which were affected due to excessive rain.

The main project operations include rehabilitation of some 2388.34 km upazila roads, rehabilitation of some 2274.68 km union roads, rehabilitation of 78km RCC roads, reconstruction of some 268 bridges with a cumulative length of 4631.85 meter, reconstruction of some 239 culverts with a cumulative length of 692.37 meter and tree plantation along 328km roads.

Besides, there will be construction of some 5,000km upazila Roads, some 8,000km union roads and 12,000km rural roads as well as construction of 1,40,000 meter bridges and culverts on upazila and union roads. Apart from this, there will be construction of 50,000 meter bridges and culverts on village roads.

Planning Division Senior Secretary Md Ashadul Islam said that Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the meeting asked the authorities concerned to complete the works of cyclone Amphan affected roads in a speedy manner in coordination with other ministries and divisions so that there is no overlapping of works.

The day’s ECNEC meeting also approved a project for protecting Gobindi and Holdia areas under Saghata upazila and Katalmari area under Fulchori upazila of Gaibandha district from the erosion on the right embankment of River Jamuna with Taka 798.53 crore.

The Planning Division senior secretary said the premier in the meeting stressed that the main strategy for checking river erosion should be maintaining the usual flow of water and also keeping operational the river channel through conducting capital dredging and thus maintenance dredging.

Ashadul said the Prime Minister once again underscored the need for identifying the sandbanks (dubo chars) in the rivers and thus removing those through dredging as well as creating buffer zones for preserving water.

She also asked the concerned line ministries to keep an eye so that river silt does not block the usual flow of water.

Regarding the first revision of the Important Rural Infrastructures Development Project: Barishal, Jhalakathi and Pirojpur districts with an additional cost of Taka 305 crore, Ashadul said the Prime Minister directed the concerned ministries including the Local Government Division to give special attention so that the quality of work is ensured, the quality of bitumen in road construction and maintenance remains high and thus ensure that water could not remain for long time on roads.

He said Sheikh Hasina also directed for preparing a master plan for the rural roads and infrastructures with the Local Government Division as the lead Division.

The two other projects approved in the meeting are Waste System Development of Khulna City Corporation with Taka 393.40 crore and the first revision of Construction of Sheikh Hasina Sangskritik Palli with an additional cost of Taka 102.77 crore.

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