What Is Bharatmala Pariyojana & What You Need to Know About This Scheme

As we know the smart city mission is for those cities that are developing fast as compared to other cities. Bharatmala Pariyojana, often referred to as Bharatmala, is a large-scale infrastructure development project initiated by the Government of India. It is primarily focused on improving and expanding the national highway network across the country. 

The Bharatmala Pariyojana is an ecosystem of road development that includes the development of Tunnels, Bridges, Elevated corridors, flyovers, overpasses, Interchanges, bypasses, Ring roads, etc.

Bharatmala Pariyojana for the development of the roads in India
Bharatmala Pariyojana for the development of the roads in India

Source: aatmnirbharsena

Features of the Bharatmala Pariyojana

The main objective of Bharatmala is to enhance road connectivity and transportation infrastructure in India, with a particular focus on improving the efficiency of freight movement and reducing logistics costs.

Scope 

The project aims to develop and upgrade approximately 66,100 kilometers of roads, including national highways, economic corridors, border roads, coastal roads, and expressways. It covers various parts of the country, connecting major cities, industrial hubs, ports, and border areas.

Economic Corridors

Bharatmala includes the development of economic corridors that connect key industrial and commercial centers. These corridors are designed to boost economic growth and facilitate the smooth flow of goods and people. Good economic growth makes the city the fastest-growing and emerging city in India.

Coastal and Port Connectivity

The scheme emphasizes improving road connectivity to coastal areas and ports to promote trade and economic activities related to import and export.

Border Area Development

Another significant aspect of Bharatmala is the enhancement of connectivity in border areas, which is crucial for national security and cross-border trade.

Funding

The project is funded through a combination of sources, including budgetary allocations, market borrowings, and public-private partnerships (PPP). The government aims to leverage private sector investments to accelerate infrastructure development.

Technology Integration

The project incorporates the use of technology for efficient road management and toll collection. Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) and other technological solutions are being deployed for better traffic management and monitoring.

Environmental Considerations

Efforts are made to address environmental concerns, including measures for afforestation and wildlife conservation in the project areas.

Phases

Bharatmala is implemented in multiple phases, with each phase focusing on specific road segments and corridors. The project is expected to be executed over several years.

Job Creation

Bharatmala is expected to generate employment opportunities, both directly and indirectly, through the construction and maintenance of roads and associated infrastructure. Good employment opportunities in the city make them the best cities to live and work in India.

Benefits

Upon completion, Bharatmala is anticipated to bring various benefits, such as reduced travel times, lower logistics costs, improved road safety, and increased economic activity due to better connectivity.

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Benefits of Bharatmala Pariyojana 

The Bharatmala Pariyojana, being a large-scale infrastructure development program in India, is expected to bring a wide range of benefits to the country. Here are some key benefits points

Improved Connectivity

One of the primary goals of Bharatmala is to enhance connectivity across India. This will make it easier for people and goods to move efficiently from one part of the country to another, reducing travel times and improving overall connectivity.

Economic Growth

Better road infrastructure can stimulate economic growth by enabling faster movement of goods and people. It can lead to increased economic activity, investments, and job creation, especially in areas connected by the project.

Reduced Logistics Costs

Improved road connectivity can lead to a reduction in logistics costs for businesses. This can make Indian products more competitive in both domestic and international markets.

Efficient Freight Movement

Bharatmala includes the development of economic corridors and freight-friendly highways. This will facilitate the movement of goods across the country, benefiting industries and trade.

Job Creation

The construction and maintenance of roads and associated infrastructure under Bharatmala are expected to generate employment opportunities, both directly and indirectly. As compared to the other tier 2,3,4 cities, tier 1 cities create more job opportunities due to the prime location for the MNCs and top companies.

Enhanced Trade

Improved connectivity to coastal areas and ports can boost India’s international trade by making it easier to transport goods to and from ports.

Reduction in Accidents

Upgrading and modernizing road infrastructure can improve road safety, reducing the number of accidents and fatalities on highways.

Environmental Benefits

The project also incorporates measures for environmental protection, including afforestation and wildlife corridors, which can help mitigate the environmental impact of road construction.

Strengthened Border Infrastructure

Bharatmala aims to enhance road connectivity in border areas, which is crucial for national security and trade with neighboring countries.

Boost to Tourism

Improved roads and connectivity can attract more tourists to various parts of India, promoting tourism and related industries.

Efficient Transportation

Bharatmala includes the implementation of technology like Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) to manage and monitor traffic better, making transportation more efficient.

Revenue Generation

The government can generate revenue through toll collection on some of the newly constructed or upgraded highways, which can be used for further infrastructure development.

Rural Development

The project can benefit rural areas by improving connectivity to markets, healthcare facilities, and educational institutions, thereby enhancing the overall quality of life in these regions. 

Balanced Regional Development

By connecting remote and underdeveloped regions, Bharatmala aims to promote balanced regional development by reducing disparities in infrastructure.

Disadvantages of Bharatmala Pariyojana

Environmental Impact

Large-scale road construction projects can have significant environmental impacts, including deforestation, habitat destruction, and disruption of ecosystems. Efforts are made to mitigate these effects, but there can still be adverse consequences on the environment.

Land Acquisition Issues

Acquiring land for road construction can be a complex and contentious process, leading to displacement of local communities, disputes, and protests. Ensuring fair compensation and rehabilitation for affected people is a challenge.

Financial Burden

Implementing such an extensive infrastructure project requires substantial financial resources. Financing the project through budgetary allocations, market borrowings, and public-private partnerships can strain government finances and resources.

Delayed Timelines

Infrastructure projects in India, including Bharatmala, often face delays due to factors like bureaucratic processes, legal challenges, and issues related to land acquisition. Delays can increase project costs and hinder its benefits.

Environmental Degradation

The construction phase of Bharatmala can lead to soil erosion, increased pollution, and disruption of local ecosystems. Proper mitigation measures and environmental safeguards are essential to minimize these effects.

Traffic Congestion During Construction

While road construction is ongoing, it can lead to traffic congestion and disruptions, affecting commuters and businesses. But many tier 2 cities are developing the roads and perfectly controlling the traffic.

High Maintenance Costs

After construction, maintaining a vast network of roads can be expensive. Adequate funds and resources are needed to ensure the roads remain in good condition over the long term.

Public Safety Concerns

Construction zones can pose safety hazards to both workers and commuters. Ensuring safety during construction is crucial.

Economic Viability

Some sections of the road network may not immediately yield economic benefits, making it challenging to justify the high initial investments. This can impact the overall financial sustainability of the project.

Social Disruptions

Disruptions caused by construction and increased traffic can affect the quality of life for residents in nearby areas, leading to noise pollution and other inconveniences.

Inequitable Development

There can be concerns that the benefits of improved road infrastructure may not be equitably distributed, with some regions benefiting more than others, potentially exacerbating regional disparities.

Environmental Compliance

Ensuring compliance with environmental regulations and sustainability standards throughout the project’s lifespan can be a challenge.

Economic Risks

The success of Bharatmala is closely tied to economic growth and trade volumes. Economic downturns or trade disruptions can impact the project’s expected benefits. But this issue is controlled in the satellite cities in India at the time of any economic downturns.

Finance (Total Budget of Bharatmala Pariyojana )

Total Budget

Total Budget ₹692,324 crores (US$87 Billion) for 5 years of Bharatmala Project from 2017 to 2022  financial express.

  • ₹157,324 crores (US$20 Billion) of existing National Highway (NH) projects comprised under Bharatmala such as incomplete National Highway.

Phase 1

₹535,000 crores (US$67 Billion) phase-1 to be completed during 2017 dec-2019. 

  • ₹209,000 crores (US$26 Billion) through market borrowing.
  • ₹106,000 crores (US$13 Billion) through private investments:
  •  ₹219,000 crores (US$27 Billion) through Central Road Funds (CRF) and tolls.
  1. ₹97,000 crores (US$12 Billion) from CRF
  2. ₹34,000 crores (US$4.3 Billion) from new toll construction of completed highways.
  3. ₹46,048 crores (US$5.8 Billion) from current toll fee from Toll-Permanent Bridge Fee Funds (PBFF).

FY 2017-18

  • 10,000 km (6,200 mi) highways built at a rate of 27 km/day.
  • ₹65,000 crores (US$8.1 Billion) through allocation in the national budget.

FY 2018-19

  • 24.000 km (15,000 mi) will be awarded.
  • 12,000 km (7,500 mi) will be completed.
  • ₹163,000 crores (US$20 Billion) total spend:
  1. ₹78,000 crores (US$9.8 Billion) through allocation in the National Budget.
  2. ₹60,000 crores (US$7.5 Billion) through bonds.
  3. ₹25,000 crores (US$3.1 Billion) through toll construction of 30 completed Highways.
Bharatmala Pariyojana cost and investment
Bharatmala Pariyojana cost and investment

Source: InsightsonIndia

Expressways Under Phase 1

With The first phase of Bharatmala pariyojana, the government aimed to develop the expressway and give access control corridors as mentioned below:

  • Delhi-Faridabad-Sohna
  • Ahmedabad-Dholera Expressway
  • Kanpur-Lucknow Expressway
  • Delhi-Vadodara Expressway
  • Vadodara-Mumbai Expressway
  • Ambala-kotputli Corridor
  • Chennai-Salem Corridor
  • Durg-Raipur-Arang Corridor
  • Raipur-Vishakhapatnam Corridor
  • Chittoor-Thatchur Corridor
  • Amritsar-Bhatinda-Jamnagar Corridor
  • Hyderabad(Suryapet)-Visakhapatnam(Devarpalle) Corridor
  • Kota-Indore(Garoth-Ujjain) Corridor
  • Urban Extension Road II
  • Delhi-Dehradun Corridor
  • Bengaluru-Satellite Ring Road
  • Delhi-Amritsar-Katra Expressway
  • Bengaluru-Chennai Expressway
  • Surat-Ahmednagar Solapur
  • Solapur-Kurnool Corridor
  • Kharagpur-Siliguri Corridor(Till Morgram)
  • Indore-Hyderabad Corridor
  • Hyderabad-Raipur Corridor
  • Nagpur-Vijayawada Corridor

Impact of Bharatmala Pariyojana

Bharatmala will significantly boost highway infrastructure

  • Raise 6 National Corridors to 50 National Corridors (6 NC and 44 Economic Corridors (EC))
  • Raise 40% freight to 80% freight on National Highways.
  • Raise 300 districts to 550 districts connected by minimum 4-lane Highways.

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This is all you should know about Bharatmala Pariyojana

Bharatmala Pariyojana is a significant infrastructure initiative aimed at transforming India’s road network and supporting economic growth. The Bharatmala Pariyojana, being a large-scale infrastructure development program in India, is expected to bring a wide range of benefits to the country. Many of the projects are developed under turnkey projects.

It is important to note that the successful implementation of the project requires addressing various challenges, including environmental considerations, land acquisition issues, and proper project 

management to ensure these benefits are realized efficiently and sustainably.
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