The Union Government has announced to build 83,677km of roads, highways, greenfield expressways and bridges with investment of Rs.6.92 lakh core in next five years i.e. by 2022 to further optimise efficiency of movement of goods and people across the country. It also includes first phase of new umbrella programme BharatMala Pariyojana that involves construction of 34,800 km highways by 2022.
It was announced as part of massive Rs. 9 lakh crore package to give a fillip to economy which also includes Rs. 2.11 lakh crore for bank recapitalisation to revive investments as well as growth. It will generate 14.2 crore mandays of jobs.
The BharatMala project will include economic corridors (9,000 km), inter-corridor and feeder route (6,000 km), national corridors efficiency improvement (5,000 km), border roads and international connectivity (2,000 km), coastal roads and port connectivity (2,000 km) and greenfield expressways (800 km).
Further, remaining road projects of 10,000 km under National Highways Development Project will form a part of programme. Government has identified new routes between economically important cities that will be 20% longer in terms of distance but take relatively less travel time.
Under programme, roads will be built along borders with Bhutan and Nepal, bottlenecks on existing Golden Quadrilateral highway network will be removed. Moreover, road connectivity to small industries will be ensured and manufacturing centres will be connected with national highways.
Execution Authorities: The project will be executed through Ministry of Road, Transport and Highways (MoRTH), NHAI, National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation Limited (NHIDCL) and State Public Works Department (PWDs). The Centre has set a target for completion of projects in next five years.
Funding: The BharatMala project will be funded in three-pronged manner – market, private investment and asset recycling of NHAI’s toll assets. Of total Rs.5,35,000 crore, Rs, 2.09 lakh crore will be raised as debt from market, Rs 1.06 lakh crore will be mobilised through public-private partnership (PPP) mode and remaining Rs. 2.19 lakh crore will flow from accruals of Central Road Funds, Toll-Operate-Maintain-Transfer monetisation proceeds and toll collections.