Prime Minister Narendra Modi during an inauguration of Ring Road, Babatpur Airport road in Varanasi.
Varanasi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday inaugurated two important roads, having a total length of 34 kilometres and built at a cost of Rs 1,571.95 crore, in his Lok Sabha constituency Varanasi.
He was accompanied by Uttar Pradesh Governor Ram Naik, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways, Shipping, Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation Nitin Gadkari.
The 16.55-km-long Varanasi Ring Road Phase-I has been built at a cost of Rs 759.36 crore, while the work of four-laning and construction of 17.25 km Babatput-Varanasi road on NH-56 cost Rs 812.59 crore, an official release said.
The Babatpur Airport highway will connect the city with the airport and go on to link Jaunpur, Sultanpur and Lucknow. With a flyover at Harhua and a rail overbridge at Tarna, it will reduce the travel time from Varanasi to the airport, providing a big relief to the people of the holy city and tourists.
The Ring Road, with two rail overbridges and a flyover, will allow traffic on NH 56 (Lucknow-Varanasi), NH 233 (Azamgarh-Varanasi), NH 29 (Gorakhpur-Varanasi) and Ayodhya-Varanasi highways to bypass Varanasi, thereby reducing traffic congestion in the city. This will reduce travel time, fuel usage and pollution in the area.
The Ring Road will provide easier and more convenient access to Sarnath, an important site for Buddhist pilgrimage. These projects will also provide increased employment opportunities, development of small and medium industries and give a boost to economic development in the area.
Currently, national highway projects of total length 2833 km, costing Rs 63,885 crore are underway to link Varanasi with other places in eastern Uttar Pradesh.
Of these, 15 road projects of 1143 kilometre length are under various stages of construction. These include Varanasi-Jaunpur, Varanasi-Sultanpur, Sultanpur-Lucknow, Varanasi Ghaghra Bridge, Varanasi-Azamgarh among others.
Besides, there are seven targeted projects of 235 km costing Rs 8,265 crore. Also, 20 projects for 1455 km roads are in detailed project report stage.