IT rarely happens in politics, when Leader of Opposition praises a prominent leader of the ruling party. It happened in Dehradun on May 10 when former Chief Minister and senior BJP leader Major General (retd) Shri BC Khanduri was felicitated by Leader of Opposition Shri Harak Singh Rawat at a public function organised by Uttarakhand Public Forum. The reason of the felicitation was that Shri Khanduri’s sting as Union Minister for Surface Transport during the NDA government was ranked 9th amongst the 50 historical works done in the country after Independence, by The Economics Times.
“India’s most ambitious” road infrastructure project linking Kashmir to Kanyakumari through a modern highway was built through public private, partnership. The phase II of the Rs. 60,000 crore National Highways Development Programme was known as North-South and East-West Corridors. And what took place was the Golden Quadrilateral, the first phase, that connected the four metros, Delhi-Mumbai-Kolkata and Chennai, through four to six lanes expressways, along roads connecting these centres with ports.
It was for the first time in Independent India’s economic history when a major road project encompassing the whole country was launched. What it now needed was someone who could take the huge project forward. Shri BC Khanduri was the man for the job. During 2004, the target of completion of the proposed 5,846 km was a challenge. National highways have more than doubled to 70,000 km in this period.
Speaking on the occasion Khanduri said the project needed sixty thousand crore rupees. It seemed an impossible task but all the hurdles were removed with strong will power and a vision. He said the whole credit for this project goes to only Shri Atal Behari Vajpayee. Leader of the Opposition Dr Harak Singh Rawat praised Shri BC Khanduri for his vision and as an honest and successful politician. When Shri Khanduri was Minister of State with Independent Charge for Road Transport and Highways in NDA Government he showed his ability and did historical task and as a Chief Minister, he led State to development and dream of the people. Shri Harak Singh Rawat said Shri Khanduri’s works and contribution to the country and State would be remembered for long. He said he would never hesitate while appreciating a leader like Shri BC Khanduri.
On this occasion, first Chief Minister Shri Nityanand Swami was also felicitated for his outstanding contribution to politics and the development of the State. Environmentalist Shri Sunderlal Bahuguna, Dr. Anil Joshi, Mayor of Dehradun Shri Vinod Chamoli, Brig. Shri NK Gupta and senior BJP leader Shri Umesh Aggarwal were also present on the occasion.