Prime Minister Narendra Modi has with continued Nitin Gadkari as Road Transport and Highways Minister recognising his stellar performance in the previous term.
He has been given additional responsibility of spearheading the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises. This comes in the wake of various challenges faced by the sector after demonetisation and roll out of Goods and Services Tax (GST).
On expected lines, senior BJP leader Nitin Gadkari on Thursday took oath as Cabinet Minister in the Narendra Modi government.
Known for his organisational skills, Gadkari was one of the star performers in the previous government. He not only kick started languishing road projects but also put highway development on fast track. Through various innovative schemes, he revived private sector interest in the road sector.
Gadkari has been one of the handful ministers who never hesitated to make his out-of-box ideas public and implementing some of them. With his business-like approach, he was able to compel the bureaucracy to take decisions fast to ensure momentum in project implementation.
He also decentralised power and empowered officials in ministries under his control. This greatly helped in speeding up projects. An efficient monitoring system across various levels ensured remarkable performance. Not surprisingly, the average highway construction surpassed previous records and set a new benchmark.
With Gadkari at helm, many signature projects such as two-laned 9 km long tunnel on Chenani-Nashri section of NH-1A, Dhola Sadia Bridge, Narmada Bridge, New Brahmaputra Bridge and Eastern Peripheral Expressway got completed.
Under his leadership, innovative Hybrid Annuity Model (HAM) and Toll-Operate-Transfer (TOT) were rolled out. The two models have seen considerable success. A large number of road projects were awarded on hybrid annuity model in the last two years.
Earlier, he expedited construction of road projects as Maharashtra PWD Minister and played key role in building Mumbai-Pune Expressway.