Although farmers of some villages have opposed the acquisition of their agricultural land for this project, Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari on Thursday said that the Delhi-Katra expressway will be launched in two years.
"This expressway will reduce the distance from 727 to 572 kilometers, you will reach Katra from Delhi in six hours," he said.
The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has already floated two separate tenders for works under the Delhi-Amritsar-Katra Expressway project on the hybrid annuity model (HAM) under Bharatmala Pariyojana.
The scope of work includes the construction of four-six-lane access-controlled expressways from the junction with Pathankot-Gurdaspur road near Balsua to the junction with Hiranagar road near Gurha Baildaran village of Delhi-Amritsar-Katra Expressway in the state of Punjab and the Union Territory of Jammu & Kashmir. The value of the project is Rs 1,890.7 crore.
The authority also invited bids for construction of a four-six-lane access-controlled expressway from a junction with Hiranagar road near Gurha Baildaran village to Junction with Jammu Ring Road (NH-244A) near Jakh village of Delhi-Amritsar-Katra expressway in Jammu & Kashmir.
Farmers of Jammu, Punjab opposed acquisition of land
Farmers of some villages of Jammu and Punjab have opposed the acquisition of their agricultural land for the Delhi-Amritsar-Katra expressway, which passed through Delhi, Punjab, Haryana, and Jammu-Kashmir.
Farmers of Samba have recently held a demonstration against the acquisition of their agricultural land without providing any alternative land or compensation.
Expressway to pass through 229 villages of J&K
The Delhi-Katra expressway corridor will cover as many as 229 villages in four major districts of the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir.
The Expressway, in the Union Territory, will be 157-Km in length. It will be 43.4- Km in Kathua, about 25-Km in Samba district, 72-Km in Jammu district, and 16.5-km in Reasi district. As per the Detailed Project Report (DPR) of the project, in Kathua district land of 37 villages will be acquired, in Samba the number is 70. Land from the highest number 96 villages will be acquired in the Jammu district followed by 26 villages in Reasi district.
The expressway will run through 96 villages in Jammu district include a village in Akhnoor, eight of R S Pura, 14 of Bishnah, six of Jammu South, 13 of Mandal, two of Khour, four of Jammu West, 28 of Marh, two of Jammu North in Nagrota, 11 of Dansal, one Mara Mandari, and six in Bhalwal.
Finally, on touching Katra town in Reasi district, it will be passing through 26 villages, and once completed, the national capital will be directly connected to the holy town, the base camp of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi, once the expressway will be ready.
The highway will reduce the Katra-Delhi journey
Rs 35,000 crore expressway corridor will reduce the current Delhi-Katra distance from 727-km to 572-km and Delhi-Amritsar distance to 405-km allowing commuters to cover it within 5 to 6 hours. While the survey has been completed and land acquisition is under progress in different states from where it will pass.