In order to build the required road infrastructure both in the rural and urban areas of the country, the government has decided to increase the length of country’s highways from the current 1.05 lakh-km to 1.40 lakh-km. To achieve the laid down targets, it has also been decided to increase financing from the current level of Rs. 11,000-cr to Rs. 29,000-cr per annum by the 14th Plan period (2022-27). On this score, it may be recalled that the Rural Roads Development Vision Plan (RRDPV) 2025 (formulated way back in 2007), in its broad assessment had also made similar observation for investments in construction, upgrading, and maintenance. The planned road network would eventually carry 80% of the country’s freight.
In its recent report of the Road Transport Ministry revealed that 78% of the targeted road network is currently either one or two lane and 1/3rd is less than two lanes, making the task of four-laning of India’s economic lifeline, a challenging task. Nearly 40% including rural, intra-district and State highways are not metalled, outlining limitations in connectivity.