For any government, the proof of success in developmental work lies in the fact of how much money that government spent on the projects. By this yardstick, the Trinamool Government has proved to be far more successful than the previous Left Front Government (comparing the first four years of the present dispensation to the last four of the Left Front).
Take the case of Public Works Department (PWD). For building roads, bridges and national highways, the Left Front Government spent Rs 2421,28,00,000 during its last four years, that is, 2007-08 to 2010-11. On the other hand, the Trinamool Government spent during its first four years (that is, till 2014-15) spent Rs 5978,99,00,000, an increase of almost two-and-a-half times. Therefore, the average spend per year during the last four years of the Left Front Government was Rs 605,32,00,000 whereas the same during the first four years of the Trinamool Government was Rs 1494,73,00,00 – almost two-and-a-half times more.
If considered percentage-wise, the change from 2007-08 to 2010-11 was an increase of only 33.91, whereas the change from 2011-12 to 2014-14, that is, the first four years of the Trinamool Government, was an increase of a massive 195.9. Hence, from these data, it is quite clear that the development during the rule of Trinamool Congress in West Bengal has been extremely impressive.
If compared to the consumer price index (CPI), one finds that the rate at which the CPI increased over the last four years of Left Front rule, the budget for PWD did not. Therefore, there had been no effective increase in the budget allocation in the last four years of Left Front rule.
In the case of building the rural network of roads, too (though, of course, this does not fall under the PWD). Under the Trinamool Government, 8,200 km of rural roads has been constructed. For every kilometre, Rs 60 lakh has been spent. This is a record for the state, and for this, the State has consistently got appreciation from the Centre.
Widening National Highways
During these four years, 1270 km of National Highways has been two-laned and 2672 km has been widened to 5.5 m, which is again a record.
The Trinamool Government-formed State Highway Development Corporation (SHDC) has taken up plans for building 1,000 km of highways during the current financial year (2015-16), and 3,000 km more through the public-private partnership (PPP) route.
Work has also started on the Asian Highways – Rs 600.84 crore is being spent on Asian Highway-2, linking the Nepal border to the Bangladesh border, and Rs 971.4 crore is being spent on Asian Highway-48, linking the Bangladesh border to the Bhutan border.
Besides, the work for building 88 bridges and railway overbridges is almost complete. Rest houses for travelers called Path Sathi and Sulabh toilets totalling 150 have been built. A lot of other new projects have also been taken up.
Other PWD projects
Besides roads and bridges, a lot of PWD projects in the health and education sectors have also either been completed with distinction or are to be completed soon. For example, the building housing the Linear Accelerator Facility at NRS Medical College and Hospital, Trauma Centre at SSKM, Orthopaedic Centre at RG Kar Medical College and Hospital, the sixth floor of Lumbini Park Mental Hospital, a government engineering college and a leather technology building in Salt Lake, the Women’s University in Diamond Harbour, Kazi Nazrul University, Bankura University, and others.
Therefore, it is quite apparent that within a short span of time, the Trinamool Congress Government has done a lot of work regarding the building of roads and bridges. Under the able leadership of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, the State has progressed by leaps and bounds.