As many as 1.5 lakh people die every year in 5 lakh road accidents in the country, Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari said in Lok Sabha on March 9.


"It is very unfortunate that 1.5 lakh people die in around 5 lakh road accidents that take place in the country every year. Road engineering can also be partly blamed for these high number of accidents," he said during Question Hour.


Gadkari said the government has accorded highest priority in reducing the number of accidents and checking deaths on the road.


He said more underpasses and overbridges would be constructed in national highways which pass through villages and towns so that all such accidents could be checked.


The Minister said 14,268 kms road are being converted into four-lane roads at the cost of ₹1,83,180 crore and their works will be completed by May 2019.


"An amount of ₹62,046 crore has been incurred on the development of National Highways including works of four-laning of NHs in various states during 2016-17," he said.


Gadkari also said toll tax to the tune of ₹43,721 crore was collected on NHs in the country in the last three years.