New Delhi: A total of 255 road projects with an aggregate length of about 10,699 km have been approved till October 2019 under Bharatmala Pariyojana with a total cost of Rs 2.65 Lakh Crore approximately. The first phase of this 34,800 km long highway construction project will be completed by 2021-22, Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari told Lok Sabha on Monday.
The central government had approved Bharatmala Pariyojana Phase-I in October 2017 with an aggregate length of about 34,800 km, including 10,000 km residual National Highway Development Project (NHDP) stretches. The estimated outlay approved for the project is Rs 5.35 Lakh Crore. Bharatmala Pariyojna includes development of about 9,000 km length of economic corridors, about 6,000 km length of Inter-corridor and feeder roads, about 5,000 km length of National Corridors Efficiency improvements, about 2,000 km length of Border and International connectivity roads, about 2,000 km length of Coastal and port connectivity roads, and about 800 km length of Expressways.
National Highway Development Project
The idea behind the National Highways Development Project (NHDP) is simple. National highways account for only about 2% of the total length of roads but carry about 40% of the total traffic across the length and breadth of the country. So it was decided under NHDP to upgrade, rehabilitate and widen major highways in India to a higher standard. NHDP was started as a flagship project during NDA-1 in 1998 under the leadership of Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. This project is managed by the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) under the Ministry of Road, Transport and Highways. The NHDP represents 49,260 km of roads and highways work and construction in order to boost the economic development of the country. The government has planned to end the NHDP program in early 2018 and consume the ongoing projects under a larger Bharatmala project.