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The Government of India and Asian Development Bank (ADB) have signed a $252 million loan to continue improving rural roads in Assam, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, and West Bengal. The ADB's loan represents the first tranche of a $ 800 million financing facility under the Rural Connectivity Investment Programme.
The loan will construct 3,461 km of all-weather rural roads in the five states, benefiting nearly 1,600 rural habitations. The second goal is to improve the capacity of implementing agencies through rural connectivity training and research centers and rural roads network management units.
The provision of all-weather roads in rural areas is a crucial investment that will improve access to markets, district headquarters, health and education facilities, and other centers of economic activity.
This is an important priority of the Government of India. The Ministry of Rural Development (MoRD) is the executing agency of the project at the central level while the implementing agencies at the state level will be the respective State Rural Roads Development Agencies. The first tranche is expected to be completed in December, 2015.