Govt to use bamboo-made ‘Bahu Balli’ fences along highways: Nitin Gadkari

PTI, Jul 26, 2023, 3:55 PM IST

The government informed the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday that it would introduce bamboo-made ”Bahu Balli” fences along expressways and national highways and a pilot project would be undertaken in Chhattisgarh.

Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari informed the House that this is an alternative to the use of steel and will be eco-friendly too. The move would also help provide a boost to rural economy, and villagers and tribals would benefit from it, he said.

”This type of ‘Bahu Balli’ fencing is being experimented for the first time and it is eco-friendly too. All testing has been done and instead of steel, cross-barriers of bamboo are being developed. All approvals have been received,” Gadkari said in response to supplementary queries of MPs during the Question Hour.

”We have decided to institute a pilot project in Chhattisgarh and if it is successful, there will be cross-barriers of bamboo instead of steel. It will be eco-friendly and tribals will get work in tribal areas. Bamboo is available in the northeast in abundance,” the minister said amid a din created by the opposition members over the Manipur issue.

He said axis-control roads are being made to avoid animals entering the highways and these fences will be used there too.

Replying to another supplementary query, the minister said rural areas will benefit from it as farmers will sow bamboo on wastelands.

He said ethanol is being made from bamboo in Assam, besides pickles and textiles.

”In China, bamboo has a big economy and in our country too, bamboo economy will be set up and can be saved because of such cross-barriers steel.

”If the bamboo cross-barriers is successful, then cross-barriers will be made of bamboo on roads and tribals and rural people will benefit from it,” Gadkari said.

In his written reply to a question, the minister said, ”Manual of specifications and standards for expressways provides for fencing near RoW (right of way) boundary to prevent entry of pedestrians, animals and vehicles on to the expressway.” ”Further, fencing generally comprises mild steel sections and welded steel wire mesh. However, Ministry issued guidelines on 04.02.2019 to provide precast concrete boundary wall near RoW boundary on expressways and green-field access controlled national highways.

”A proposal has been received and an order has been placed for feasibility and demonstration of ‘Bahu Balli’ fences,” he said.

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