Bharatmala achieves a mere one-third of the 24,800 planned road network since 2017

The road network is being built to reduce logistics cost, current average of 18 percent to 6 percent and and increase investments in manufacturing and exports. 

By Amit Vijay M calendar 28 Oct 2023 Views icon5618 Views Share - Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share to LinkedIn Share to Whatsapp
Bharatmala achieves a mere one-third of the 24,800 planned road network since 2017

In the last six years, only 39 percent  (9672 kilometres) of the 24,800 kilometres of road networks approved in the first phase of the 5.35 trillion BharatMala project have been completed, as per the data reviewed by Autocar Professional from the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) and Comptroller and Auditor General of India. 

The project's goal is to improve the efficiency of the National Corridor by removing bottlenecks through the construction of elevated corridors, bypasses, ring roads, lane expansion, and logistics parks.

According to rating agency ICRA, one of the reasons for the delayed implementation is a nearly 100 percent jump in the cost to Rs 10.63 trillion from the initial Rs 5.35 trillion up to December 2021 due to a substantial rise in land acquisition costs and a steep increase in input costs.

The completion cost is also expected to be 15-20 percent higher, given the impact of the rise in commodity prices on construction costs, ICRA said.

Launched in 2017, the country's most ambitious Pan-India road connectivity plan, the Bharatmala project involves the development of 24,800 km of national highways and a residual 10,000 km of highways pending under the erstwhile National Highway Development Program (NHDP).

“The project focuses on optimising the efficiency of freight and passenger movement across the country by bridging critical infrastructure gaps through effective interventions like the development of economic corridors, inter-corridors, and feeder routes, national corridor efficiency improvement, border and international connectivity roads, coastal and port connectivity roads, and greenfield expressways,” the road transport ministry said in a statement.

The Bharatmala project envisions improving the efficiency of the National Corridor including the Golden-Quadrilateral and North, South –East West corridors by decongesting the choke points through the construction of elevated corridors, bypasses, ring roads, lane expansion, and logistics parks at identified points.

The road network is being built to reduce logistics cost, current average of 18 percent to 6 percent and and increase investments in manufacturing and exports. 

In the domain of inter corridor and feeder routes development of a total 15, of 500 km of work has been planned. The government of India had approved 6000 km of which 1600 km or 27 percent of work has been completed. 

National Corridor Efficiency Improvement of the total planned outlay of 13,100km, approval was given for  5,000km of which 1650 km or 33 percent of the work has been completed over the last half-decade.

In the border and international roads category of the 5300 km approved by the Government of India, 2000 km was officially approved, and the completion rate there is 63 percent.

Regarding connectivity roads in the coastal and port areas, of the sanctioned outlay of 2000 km of road network development, only 100 km of roads have been laid.

The only area where the Government Bharatmala project has managed to show good progress is in the greenfield expressways category where of the sanctioned 800 km of roads, the achievement rate is above 120 percent.

According to an analysis of the Bharatmala project by SBI Capital Markets, they have estimated that of the Rs 66,100 crore of which only 37 percent of 24,800 km has been sanctioned, the balance 41, 300 km of the road network will be awarded by FY 25 and construction work will be completed by FY28.

The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways recently submitted the Vision 2047 plan is projected to surpass the scope of Bharatmala, aiming to construct 30,000-35,000 km of access-controlled highways over the next decade and a half much before India's 100th Independence anniversary in 2047.

The second phase which is BharatMala2 will be integrated as part of the Vision 2047 plan.

Rating agency ICRA had also said that the government’s road connectivity project under the 'Bharatmala Pariyojana' programme may face delays of around six years and will be completed only by 2027-28.

According to ICRA, if the Indian government manages to execute around 4,500-5,000 km of projects under the Bharatmala scheme, all projects will be completed by 2027-28.

RELATED ARTICLES
Tork Motors on verge of closing funding round

auther Autocar Pro News Desk calendar15 Apr 2024

"We are also keeping in mind that we have to become profitable one day," Shelke said.

'EV makers must factor in delivering end-to-end solutions based on customer needs': Prasad Telikepalli of Matter

auther Autocar Pro News Desk calendar15 Apr 2024

The Co-founder and Group CTO also spoke about how EV conversations have shifted from just powertrain and energy to becom...

Hero MotoCorp begins deliveries of Mavrick 440

auther Autocar Pro News Desk calendar15 Apr 2024

The Mavrick is offered in three variants: base (Rs 1.99 lakh), mid (Rs 2.14 lakh), and top (Rs 2.24 lakh).