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Saturday, August 20 2022

KCCI press release impact of partial closure of MLR-BLR Highway

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Press Release by the KCCI Ref. No. :2021-22/0102 dated  July 15, 2022

Shiradi Ghat witnessed yet another landslide on a section of NH 75. Subsequently, the Hassan DC has issued an order barring of vehicular movements in the Shiradi Ghat stretch from 06.00 p.m to 06.00 a.m. and as a precaution, traffic from Maranahalli to Donigal- Heggade, about 20 km on NH 75, will move on a single lane from 6.00 a.m. to 06.00 p.m. The traffic ban after dusk will stay until the rainfall subsides. This will severely affect the trade and commerce activities, particularly export-import trade.

The sorry state of roads leading to landslide without proper planning and timely reconstruction of the roads when such disasters are anticipated has become a normal trend every year causing severe inconvenience to the people and particularly trade activities resulting in huge losses. Time and again KCCI has appealed the leaders at State and Central governments to have immediate action plan to set right this issue.

There seems to be no accountability for such shoddy work and dilly-dallying to carry out repair and maintenance works on time by the concerned departments. The inevitable, made so by agencies has happened now and will further burden the tax payers. This raises a red flag as it may also lead to serious mishap in future putting the life of people in jeopardy if timely action is not taken by the government. Who will owe the accountability in such a situation? – Is it the Hassan district administration, National Highways Authority of India (NHAI), state or central government? Neither the Charmadi Ghat nor the Sampaje Ghat could take goods trailer vehicles plying to New Mangalore Port. They have to take the Hubballi –Ankola route entailing an additional 350 kms with whopping cost. While we see Highways across the country and even in the state are getting a facelift (even those with difficult terrain), the citizens of this region feel short-changed.

We have been suffering for three decades because of improper handling of the Shiradi Ghat stretch. It is disheartening that the government has failed to provide good road connectivity between Bengaluru and Mangaluru.

The apathy of the Shiradi Ghat Highway stretch was also brought to the notice of Hon’ble Minister for Road Transport and Highways, Shri Nitin Gadkari during his address to the KCCI members in February 28  2022 in Mangaluru.

We hereby enclose the letters addressed to Hon’ble Minister, Shri Nitin Gadkari, apprising about the issue before his visit to Mangaluru and also copy of the letter sent to him last year in December 2021.

We hope that the government shall take immediate action in finding an appropriate solution considering the interest of trade and commerce without hampering EXIM trade, movement of LPG, agricultural products etc.

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