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Bihar govt to construct Ganga Expressway

Satyavrat Mishra  |  Mumbai/ Patna 

After being let down by private partners, the state government is now planning to construct its ambitious project on its own. It has also sought financial assistance from and ADB,

The state government envisioned this Rs. 2,224 crores worth project to provide 22 KMs long four lane congestion free road link within Patna. Government cleared the decks for the project in August and planned to construct the road through private-public partnership (PPP). Work on the project was scheduled to begin by the end of the last year. Reliance Infrastructure, Gammon India and Navyuga Constructions were shortlisted by the state government as partners for its dream project. However, none of them showed up in the final bidding process and the government was forced to put the project on backburner.

However, the government has now decided to revisit the process. "We are still committed to this mega project," Nand Kishore Yadav, Road Construction Minister told Business Standard, "and if necessary we will construct the project on our own. After the no show of the private partners, we are now changing the mode of construction. It will be now constructed through either Build-Operate-Transfer (BOT) or
Engineering-Procurement-Construction (EPC) mode. We are now finishing up the process and soon a global tender in this regard will be floated. We are hoping for a good response this time." The minister added, "Last time we failed because of the global financial slowdown. The project requires a large sum of money, which the firms were unable to find. However, we are now evaluating the other options as well."

The government now wants to begin work on the project by next fiscal. It has decided to acquire over 200 hectares of land for the expressway. "We want to begin construction work as early as possible. This project will benefit the people and so we do not want unnecessary delays. We have also approached and Asian Development Bank (ADB) for the financial assistance," told the minister.

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