Calling Agra-Lucknow Expressway a `growth highway,’ Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav said that this expressway will be the pride of Uttar Pradesh and an envy for other states who still cannot believe that road of such a magnitude can come up in such a short time.
“We built this road in a record time and credit for this goes to the team which worked round the clock to ensure its completion in just 22 months. This expressway is an example for other states. They are envious of our achievements because they know we have achieved almost an impossible task,” Yadav said while inaugurating the much-hyped Agra-Lucknow Expressway in Lucknow on Monday.
The six-lane Greenfield expressway was inaugurated amid a spectacular air show of eight fighter aircrafts. The inauguration was done on the eve of the 78th birthday of Mulayam Singh Yadav where the entire Yadav family including Ram Gopal Yadav, Shivpal Singh Yadav and their family members were present presenting a picture perfect of unity in the family
The Chief Minister said that the image of Uttar Pradesh has got a boost because of this expressway as it is the longest access control highway. “This will change the face of Uttar Pradesh. Mandis will come up across this highway where farmers will not only sell their produce at competitive prices but will also get farm equipments at their door steps,” he said.
Akhilesh Yadav said this expressway will not only encourage agriculture but also provide industrial corridor where private entrepreneurs would be encouraged to set up food processing units, construct cold storages, warehousing and milk based industries and small handloom units.
He congratulated the whole team saying probably this is the only expressway which has been completed without a murmur of protest. The land was acquired through mutual understanding. The government paid four times the cost of land to the farmers. When other states are struggling to get their land acquisition policy at place, “we showed the world how to acquire land and complete construction,” he said adding that it is one of the state-of – the- art Expressway where even fighter aircrafts could land.
The CM said: “The success mantra of any state is if you double the speed, economy will treble in no time and this has taken shape with the construction of this expressway. This high speed transportation corridor between Lucknow and Agra will accelerate growth.”
He also declared that if Samajwadi Party returns to power, the expressway will be extended up to Ballia. “We have done a lot for the people. Metro is also coming in Lucknow. I will inaugurate the first phase of Metro on December 1. We have also distributed laptops and 55 lakh families have got Samajwadi Pension. I will go to the people with the report card and appeal to them to vote SP back to power,” he said
Mulayam Yadav, in his speech, alleged that the there is a conspiracy to defame UP by terming it a backward state.
“This Government has done unprecedented work almost in all sectors including health, education, social welfare, water and power. UP is the only state wehere poor get free education in schools and treatment in hospitals. Still, the opposition has spread a canard to defame us,” he said while claiming that in Northern India, UP is the fastest growing economy.
The SP president also appreciated the work done by engineers and other officials to construct this expressway in a record time. “These engineers kept their words and constructed the road within specific time,” he said.
Agra-Lucknow Expressway, which stretches 302-km, was the most ambitious project of the Chief Minister. It has been completed in a record time of 23 month and has cost Rs 13,200 crore but will be open for the public only in December this year.