Gadkari asks Manipur govt to encourage use of dredged sand to build highways

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on August 17, 2020

Nitin Gadkari Kamal Singh

Move will help lower highway construction costs, clear up waterways, says Transport Minister

Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari has asked Manipur if the State could bring in a notification to provide sand dredged from rivers for the construction of roads and highways in the region.

This will help lower the cost of highways while also clearing up the waterways, Gadkari pointed out. Several States have already brought out such notifications, he added, citing the example of Maharashtra.

He said this at a video-conference to lay the foundation stones for 13 highway projects including a road safety project in Manipur. The road safety project includes building foot over-bridges, among others, on a stretch of national highway.

New technology

The Road Ministry is also evaluating the use of new technology, using pre-cast steel fibre to construct bridges instead of steel, a move which can lower the cost of construction by almost 25-30 per cent, said Gadkari.

Highways can be built faster in the area if land acquisition and utility clearances are expedited, he added. The minister inaugurated and laid the foundation stones for 316 km of highways, i

Nitin Gadkari, Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways   -  PTI

nvolving a construction value of about ₹3,000 crore.

Gadkari said there is scope to lower the cost of transport services by focussing on biofuels instead of diesel and petrol. Methanol-based engines for vehicles and ships can be encouraged to be Made in India, in the backdrop of high diesel prices, he added.

More so, as Assam Petroleum is already producing methanol. Use of methanol-based marine engines can be encouraged in the region, he further said.

Methanol-based engines

Also, there is scope to run bio-CNG based buses in Manipur, which are cheaper than diesel and will eventually lower bus fares, said Gadkari. Rice-based ethanol can be used in such buses, as has been done in Nagpur, he said.

Gadkari further said methanol-based engines can be made for use in various vehicles, to provide lower cost bus and cab services. Use of methanol fuel as a standard has also been finalised. Several vehicle manufacturers who are present in India are already making flex engines for markets in Brazil, the US and Canada, he added.

Published on August 17, 2020

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