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Union Minister Nitin Gadkari Addresses Delay in Mumbai-Goa Highway Completion

Union Minister Nitin Gadkari opens up about the challenges hindering the progress of the Mumbai-Goa highway project.

Nagpur | October 21, 2023: In an insightful conversation with renowned actor Prashant Damle during the coffee table book launch organized by Sakal Media Group, Union Minister for Roads, Transport and Highways, Nitin Gadkari, shed light on the prolonged delay in the construction of the Mumbai-Goa highway. Addressing the concerns of many who have been waiting for its completion, Gadkari openly accepted responsibility for the project’s slow progress and explained the obstacles that have impeded its development.

Prashant Damle, known for his candid interviews, asked Gadkari a pointed question, “In your case, it is said that if something is going to be done, it will be done, and if it is not done, it will not be done. Once you decide that if it is done or not, the matter is over. But from the point of view of Maharashtra, the delicate question is that, from 2014 to 2023, why was the Mumbai-Goa Highway not built?”

Gadkari’s response was both candid and forthright. He stated, “The first thing is that if the highway is not done, I am responsible for it. I am not putting the responsibility on anyone else. The bridge over the river in Konkan was washed away, after which we completed it in eight to nine months. In fact, if this highway had already been completed, these tragic incidents would not have occurred.”

Initially, the Mumbai-Goa highway project was entrusted to the Maharashtra government. During the tenure of Chhagan Bhujbal as the minister, tenders were issued, and the work was awarded to contractors. However, the project faced numerous challenges, including changes in contractors and ongoing issues related to land acquisition.

Gadkari emphasized that he doesn’t place blame on anyone for the difficulties and problems that have arisen during the project. He shared the extensive efforts he personally invested, stating, “I held the most meetings in my life for this road. I had no success even after 75 to 80 meetings.” Despite these challenges, Gadkari expressed his optimism that the Mumbai-Goa highway would be completed by the end of this year, specifically in the month of December.

The candid conversation between Nitin Gadkari and Prashant Damle shed light on the complexities and challenges involved in large-scale infrastructure projects, while also offering hope for the timely completion of the Mumbai-Goa highway, a critical lifeline for the region.

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