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Delay in govt infrastructure plans costs exchequer Rs 60,000 crore

Government projects missing their deadlines is a norm which does not surprise many, but the delay in completion of infrastructure projects has cost the exchequer above Rs 60,000 crore. In a reply given to Rajya Sabha, the minister of statistics and programme implementation, Srikant Kumar Jena informed that projects the government has been bearing Rs 65,771.83 crores just for  projects that have  been delayed by more than three years and have a cost of Rs 150 crore.

The minister in his reply also informed that as on 1 December 2012, there were 566 projects that the ministry is monitoring and of these, 270 projects were delayed with respect to their original schedules of commissioning.  The delay in some projects has been more than 39 year, consider the Railway line project santioned in 1974 for the Howrah-Amta- Champadanga railway line, which was to be completed at the cost of Rs 31.62 crores. 

The project has still not been completed and the anticipated cost of the project stands at Rs 499.16 crores, with a cost overrun of  1488.67 percent.

The first 24-km stretch of the section from Howrah to Bargachia was completed in 1984  and the next  6km long Bargachhia-Munsirhat  was inaugurated in 2000,however,it is the Bargachhia-Champadanga  line is yet to be completed. The minister in his reply has stated that delay in projects is due to regulatory approvals, non-availability/delayed-availability of funds, land acquisition, land/site handover,  lack of strong R&R (Rehabilitation & Resettlement) policies.

The projects which have seen maximum delay are the railway projects, with 18 projects running behind schedule. The Tamluk Digha Line Doubling is another project of the railways which was initiate in 1984 and has been still running behind the schedule with a cost overrun of Rs 792.44 crore. The other railway project which has seen a huge cost overrun is the Udhampur-Srinagar - Baramulla, the initial cost of the project was Rs 2500 crore and the anticipated cost stands at  Rs  20,000 crore.
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