The DONER Ministry is yet to make clear as to whether it would provide funds for improvement of the Sonapur-Borkhat road in East Jaiñtia Hills which is presently in a deplorable condition.
During a recent hearing in the Meghalaya High Court, R Debnath who is the lawyer for the DONER Ministry has sought one-week time to seek details from the ministry regarding the funding for the road project.
It may be noted that the Detailed Project Report (DPR) for the Sonapur-Borkhat road project proposed under North Eastern Road Sector Development Scheme (NERSDS) has been submitted way from 2008-09 and has finally been forwarded to the DONER Ministry for approval but till date the same is yet to be approved for reason best known to the NEC and DONER Ministry.
The State government vide its letter dated March 3, 2021 signed by the Chief Secretary has issued an undertaking, which certifies that the Government of Meghalaya undertakes to fund the balance portion of Rs 88.33 crore (Phase-II) and to complete the whole project in case NERSDS is not continued during the 15th Finance Commission period.
In the same letter, a request has been made by the State government to the NEC to consider sanctioning the amount of Rs 62.20 crore for the first phase of the road project at the earliest.
However, the NEC and DONER Ministry have not come up with any clear proposal on the proposed road project despite the assurance by the State government to fund the balance portion of Rs 88.33 crore.
Residents of Hingaria, Huroi, Lahalein and Lejri villages in East Jaiñtia Hills have urged the State government and Chief Minister Conrad Sangma to vigorously pursue with the DONER Ministry for speedy approval and sanction of the project for improvement of Sonapur-Borkhat road.
The Joint Action Committee of the Dorbar Shnong of Hingaria, Huroi, Lahalein and Lejri have expressed their concern with the “adamant attitude” of the Central government to accord approval of the proposed road project under the North East Road Sector Development Scheme (NERSDS).