Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader today told the parliament that construction cost of roads in Bangladesh is higher than that of India and China due to difference in soil conditions.
The minister came up with the remarks in reply to a supplementary question of BNP lawmaker Rumeen Farhana in the parliament.
In the supplementary question, the BNP MP elected from reserved seats for women, in parliament criticised the minister for higher construction cost of roads in Bangladesh.
She also said despite the higher construction cost, roads in Bangladesh are not durable and long-lasting causing sufferings to the people.
Rumeen wanted to know whether the concerned ministry is taking any measures in this regard.
In reply, Quader said, “You will have to understand that soil condition of China and India is different from Bangladesh. You will have to consider the matter when you will go for a comparison of construction cost [between Bangladesh and India-China].”
In reply to another query, Quader said the government is considering to take a pilot project in a bid to increase surveillance on highways round the clock using modern information technologies to prevent road accident.
Bangladesh Road Transport Authority, Highway Police, Fire Service and Civil Defense will be included in the surveillance team, he said.
Responding to another query, Quader informed the House that the government has a plan to upgrade all the regional and district highways into four lanes in phases.
“Government’s first priority is to upgrade the national highways into four lanes… then regional and district highways will be upgraded into four lanes in phases,” he said.
A total of 3,906.03 kilometers national highways, 4,766.91 kilometers regional and 13,423.36 kilometers district highways are under the Road and Highway Department (RHD) in sixty-four districts, said the minister.
Dhaka-Chattogram and Dhaka-Mymensingh national highways have already been upgraded into four lanes, he said adding that the up-gradation work of the Dhaka-Tangail national highway into four lanes is now at the finishing stage.
The work to upgrade the Dhaka-Sylhet national highway will begin soon, the minister also said.