The Uttar Pradesh government on Monday inaugurated India’s longest expressway, the six-lane Greenfield Agra-Lucknow Expressway, in the state’s Unnao district. Six fighter jets of the Indian Air Force touched down on the expressway during the ceremony.

Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav inaugurated the expressway in the presence of his father and Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav and his uncle Shivpal Yadav. The inauguration comes months ahead of the state Assembly elections, which will take place early next year.

A 3.3-km stretch of the highway has been marked for aircraft landings in case of emergencies when military airfields are not available. “In emergency will turn into a runway. This is exemplary,” Akhilesh Yadav said.

The new expressway will reduce the travel time between Delhi and Lucknow to five hours from nine hours. The UP government has claimed that the 302-km expressway has been completed in a record 23 months.

Former chief minister and Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati said the expressway was not ready for traffic yet and hence puts commuters’ safety at risk. “As the chief minister of UP, I began the construction of the Agra-Lucknow Expressway. At the time of the last Assembly elections, I was advised to inaugurate it and throw it open for public use. But I rejected the suggestion as it would have put people’s lives at risk,” she said.