BHUBANESWAR: Claiming that Odisha is one of the prime beneficiaries of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s infrastructure and connectivity push, Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas Dharmendra Pradhan on Monday said the 451-km long Digha-Gopalpur coastal highway will be a game-changer in transforming the fortunes of the State.
In a series of tweets, Pradhan said the long coastline of the State having India’s biggest container handling port and a petrochemical complex in Paradip, Odisha is strategically poised for synergised infrastructure push.
“Improved infrastructure development and connectivity are central to PM @narendramodi’s vision for #AatmaNirbharBharat. The National Infrastructure pipeline will not only revolutionise infrastructure creation but also pull India out of the economic impact of #Covid19,” he wrote.He further said Digha-Gopalpur coastal highway will also act as an economic corridor for the transport of agricultural and pisciculture produce to Paradip and Dhamra port and also play an important role in movement of supplies during natural disasters such as cyclones and floods.
The State Government had given its approval to the Rs 7,500 crore coastal highway project that will link Gopalpur in Odisha and Digha in West Bengal.
The project was cleared after the Government agreed to the original alignment of Satpada-Digha stretch via Puri-Konark-Astarang-Ratanpur-Dhamara-Basudevpur-Chandipur. In the first phase, the 240 kms stretch from Gopalpur to Ratanpur will be constructed at an estimated cost of `2,196 crore. Maintaining the ecological and environmental sanctity of the region, Pradhan said the coastal area will also emerge as one of India’s prime tourist attractions.
“Expansion of National Cadet Corps (NCC) in the coastal areas will open new avenues for the youth of the region and further strengthen disaster management capabilities,” Pradhan tweeted.
Responding to a tweet of Union Minister of Environment, Forest & Climate Change Prakash Javdekar on Project Dolphin, Pradhan said the project will not only promote a healthy marine ecosystem but also strengthen efforts to provide a safe habitat to Irrawaddy dolphins in Chilika. In a tweet, Javdekar announced that his ministry will be launching a holistic Project Dolphin in another 15 days for the conservation and protection of the dolphins in the rivers and oceans of the country.