NEW DELHI: “As much as 80-85% of roads in Uttar Pradesh are free of potholes,” claimed deputy chief minister and PWD minister of the state Keshav Prasad Maurya in an interview to Navbharat Times on Tuesday.
That’s 15% short of the target date for 100% pothole-clearing set by Uttar Pradesh chief minister Adityanath. Immediately upon assuming office, the chief minister had issued instructions to clear all the state’s roads of potholes by June 15.
Sources at the Public Works Department said that repair work of all the 1,121,816 km roads in the state would not be possible by the deadline. It was communicated during the high-level review meeting that the budget required for this is not available with the department. The PWD needs Rs 4,500 crore for the repair of all the roads, while the available budget is only Rs 1,250 crore.
Maurya said in its three months in office the new BJP government has achieved a lot. He said the government has waived farmers’ debts, is building a task force against the land mafia, has formed ‘Anti-Romeo Squads’ and begun a signature campaign for ‘Power for All’, among other things.
The UP deputy CM said these decisions have changed the image of the state and will bear visible results very soon.
On charges that the law and order situation in the state has taken a turn for the worse, Maurya said police stations have now been ordered to register every complaint, which was something that wasn’t happening earlier. A big improvement on the law and order front will therefore be seen soon, he said.
Maurya further claimed that since the BJP came to power in UP, not one area in the state got less than 18 hours of power supply a day. He however didn’t answer a question about how long it will take for all of the state’s villages to be electrified. Maurya said that after the agreement on ‘Power for All’, electrification work has picked up momentum.
The state’s deputy CM said former CM Akhilesh deliberately ignored development work in the state and pushed the state 30 years behind, all because he did not want the Narendra Modi government to get any credit.