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All future bridges will charge tolls

  • Staff Correspondent
  • 29th October, 2019 08:34:04 PM
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All future bridges will charge tolls

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Vehicles will have to pay tolls for using the bridges that will come into operation in future as no toll-free bridges will be built from now on. 

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina made the announcement as she approved a project to construct three bridges on Dhaka-Aricha highway at the Ecnec meeting on Tuesday. 

Planning Minister MA Mannan informed journalists of this at a press briefing after the meeting. 

“At present, tolls are paid on eight-lane bridges. But no toll-free bridges will be built in the country in future. Pay toll and take service,” Mannan quoted the Premier as saying. 

While giving nod to a project for security oversight of Rooppur nuke power plant at the meeting, the prime minister also spoke of constructing a second nuke power plant at the southern part of the country. 

The PM differed on the provision for acquiring two acres of land in Dhaka under the project to construct nuclear regulatory infrastructure, Mannan said. 

Instead, she suggested constructing the infrastructure at Bangladesh Atomic Energy Commission’s own land in Savar, on the outskirts of the capital Dhaka. 

In reply to a question regarding the project’s cost, Mannan said the project cost will come down, which will be settled later. The project’s estimated cost is Tk 1,710 crore. 

The PM also expressed interest in setting up marine academies in all the divisions gradually to create more marine professionals in the country, according to Mannan. 

From now on, dredging will be conducted in all the rivers of the country gradually to improve their navigability, Sheikh Hasina said. 

A decision came not to make block allocation in any project to prevent wastage of public money in the name of development work, the planning minister informed. 

“Usually, block allocations are made under projects as entertainment allowance or tour expenditure, most of which is not spent properly. So, no such block allocation will be made in future,” the minister pointed out. 

He said such provisions will be curtailed from ‘Population and Housing Census 2021’ that was approved on Tuesday at an estimated cost of nearly Tk 1,762 crore.

He said the planning commission will remain vigil on plugging loopholes in the projects to save public money. 

However, he said the cost of the population census project will must go up as the census will be held after 10 years.