Published:September 9, 2017 2:14 am
Union Minister for Road Transport, Highways and Shipping Nitin Gadkari on Friday warned “non-performing” state governments to expect reduction in Central budgetary support if they do not improve implementation of projects. Speaking at the golden jubilee celebrations of the Central Institute of Road Transport (CIRT) here on Friday, Gadkari said, “The Centre is always willing to extend support to states that are trying to improve their transport facilities — public transport, in particular. However, states must not expect any improvement in budgets if they are unwilling to perform.”
The statement comes after the minister’s warning to automobile companies flouting pollution norms. “We should move towards alternative fuel,” Gadkari had said at the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers’ convention in Delhi on Thursday. “I am going to do this, whether you like it or not. And I am not going to ask you, I will bulldoze it.”
On Friday, Gadkari welcomed public transport services offered by the five southern states and urged other states to follow it. “There are takers for good quality services and state transport units must actively upgrade their systems and services in order to attract more passengers. The transformation must be a holistic one — bus stations, quality of public transport vehicles besides making it affordable,” he said.
Urging CIRT to invest in studying technology and fuel of futuristic vehicles, including Liquid Natural Gas and methanol, he said methanol costs Rs 22 per litre and if used in public transport would not just reduce the cost but also help curb pollution.
“There is abundance of methanol that can be produced in Maharashtra, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, given the high production of sugarcane. If scientists can work on developing an advanced technology in this area, public transport can be a better and profitable business,” he said. He also announced that work on NH-4 passing through Pune will commence in the next three months.
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