Need to construct houses worth less than Rs 5 lakh: Nitin Gadkari
The government is mulling to withdraw duties imposed on import of used cooking oil to be used as an alternate, cheap fuel for transportation, union minister for road transport, highways and shipping, Nitin Gadkari said at an ASSOCHAM event.
“I have requested Commerce and Industry Minister, Nirmala Sitharaman to withdraw duties on import of fried oil which is often discarded as waste after being used once and is available in abundance across the world,” said Gadkari while addressing a global summit on ‘Smart Cities-Smart India,’ organised by The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM).
“If that oil comes in our country it will help in making bio-diesel and its cost is about Rs 3-4 per litre cheaper than petroleum diesel and when we will withdraw duties imposed on the same its price will come down by another Rs 6-7/litre,” said Gadkari.
“The average is almost the same and it will help reduce pollution, so we are encouraging use of bio-diesel,” he added.
Highlighting the importance of promoting low-cost housing across India, Gadkari “The biggest stumbling block is that only about one per cent of people in India can purchase house costing above Rs 10 lakh, so if we are able to make houses worth less than Rs five lakh about 30 per cent of people would be able to buy those houses which will help us build smart cities and provide housing to poor,” said the union minister.
Talking about use of waste material in constructing low-cost houses, Gadkari said, “Conversion of waste into wealth will be promoted and it will prove to beneficial.”
The union minister also said that central government will build one smart city each at 10 out of country’s 12 major ports, union minister for road transport, highways and shipping.
“Apart from our ports at Mumbai and Kolkata, we have planned to develop smart cities at 10 out of 12 major ports in India,” said Gadkari.
He also said that in the times ahead, use of electric cars and buses would be promoted for transportation in smart cities to reduce air pollution, besides it is very cost effective.
He also informed that government is constructing waterways on a 1,620 kilometer stretch on Ganga river between Varanasi and Haldia.
“Varanasi, Haldia and Sahibganj will be developed as multi-modal hubs with roadways, waterways and railways. For this, we have acquired land, our designs are ready, we have given work order for all three places, so before March we will begin work,” said Gadkari.
He also informed that government had initiated river traffic control system from Haldia to Farakka and it will initiate in next six months from Farakka to Patna and thereafter from Patna to Varanasi.
The union minister further informed that government will start RO-RO (Roll-on Roll-off) service at five places – Haldia, Patna, Varanasi, Sahibganj and one more place needs to be selected.