Sonam Chukey 

The government would blacktop all gewog roads and lay a base course to all farm roads in the country within its term, Prime Minister Dr Lotay Tshering said.

Despite not having motorable roads, the three gewogs of Soe, Lingzhi and Lunana receive budgetary support to improve mule tracks and bring about economic development like in other gewogs, Lyonchhen said.

He was responding to a question from Khar-Yurung MP Tshering Choden during the question-answer session at the National Assembly yesterday.

The MP asked Lyonchhen about the status of blacktopping the gewog centre (GC) road and laying base course on farm roads.

The Druk Nyamrup Tshogpa (DNT), she said, pledged to base course all farm roads and make them all-weather roads. “The party also pledged to blacktop all roads to important lhakhangs and institutions such as BHUs and schools, and remaining GC roads.” 

According to Lyonchhen for the 12th Plan they have given the local governments with a certain allocated budget and given the authority to repair the road. The road under the respective government’s jurisdiction will have the authority to repair the road.

“As per the records, we have a total of 8,450KM of farm roads, we pledged to blacktop all gewog roads but we are doing it not because we pledged but because we know that we need a better road for better socio-economic development,” Lyonchhen said.

The government has allocated an annual budget of Nu 4B for the 205 gewogs for road maintenance. The gewogs without farm road are provided equal budget amounting to Nu 21 million meant for roads.

“The gewogs could invest them to construct mule tracks and other economic developments as they deem necessary,” Lyonchhen said.

About 28 gewog roads are under construction at the moment.

He said that the government did not pledge to complete blacktopping and laying the base course in one and a half years.  “We still have three and a half years  and we will try our best to complete them all before our term completes.”