Published On:February 21 2015
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Pune-Nashik Highway Project: Govt to make another bid to woo villagers.

After a year's delay, the Pune-Nashik highway proposal, which was stuck due to the issue of land acquisition from villages along the highway, may soon gain momentum with a meeting scheduled between the district administration, the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) and affected villagers in the coming week.

As many as 102 hectares need to be acquired at different stretches from five villages - Chakan, Rajgurunagar, Alephata, Narayangaon and Rakshewadi - for the construction of the bypass.

The meeting will take place between the Pune district collector, revenue and NHAI officials, and villagers who opposed land acquisition for the bypass as they feared being landless. The meeting will look at the presentations made by all three parties.

With already two meetings conducted on the issue, officials now hope that this will be the final round and the project will sail through.

'It will be a joint discussion of the NHAI, villagers and our officials. Cases of villagers, who had said that many of them will be rendered landless, will be addressed, and NHAI too can put up their presentation on why the bypass is necessary,' said Pune District Collector Saurabh Rao.

Nearly 1,600 villagers from five villages will be affected with land acquisition to be carried out from these villages. The joint meeting will look at addressing the issue of the villagers and taking the project forward.

Widening of the Pune-Nashik highway will reduce frequent traffic snarls at Narayangaon, Chakan and Alephata. With increasing traffic congestion in Chakan-Khed-Talegoan industrial areas, the state government had decided to initiate steps to widen the highway (NH 50).

According to the plan, the 30-km stretch between Nashik Phata and Rajgurunagar will be widened to six lanes from the existing four, while the remaining stretch between Rajgurunagar and Nashik will be widened to four lanes from the existing two. The expansion becomes inevitable considering a significant increase in vehicular traffic, owing to newly-developed residential areas in the Nashik Phata-Chakan stretch and new industries coming up in Rajgurunagar and Chakan areas. The expansion of Chakan MIDC has increased the traffic of heavy vehicles on this stretch.


THE INDIAN EXPRESS


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