New India's Highways: Pavement to Prosperity

‘Kashmir main tu Kanyakumari, North- South ki Kat Gayee Durri hi Sari’

A film song from the movie ‘Chennai-Express’ may be the wrong entry point to speak about the grim subject of developing India, but it has a utilitarian role in introducing an idea that has escaped much attention. As one thinks about achieving the goal, one divides up each component to do so. At the end of the day, how one gets there is what matters, and that pathway is what gets one to the desired location.

The ultimate goal of any country’s growth and development is to elevate the entire country and place the country’s name on development maps alongside other countries. However, taking India as an example, the country’s demographics and current situations have always made it appear impossible to reach the top while taking into consideration developing each state, city, and town at a time, and it has always been considered a myth or an unfeasible task. States or cities such as Ahmedabad and Mumbai in the west, Delhi and Punjab in the north, Bangalore, Chennai, and Cochin in the south, and Kolkata and Bhubaneswar in the east, all of these cities benefit from their demographics and history, for which they are still regarded as wealthy in terms of economic growth and presence in the steps for our nation to grow. But what about other cities or states that are emerging from the ashes of underdevelopment, leaving much of their rich heritage in terms of culture or talent untapped? The northeast and eastern states of India have always had a strained relationship with the country in terms of development. The North East had long been portrayed as the treasure trove of both political and cultural alienation in the country.

One never saw the silver lining of the shining cloud of development, which directly indicated that the roadway to the desired destination was only broken. One always chooses the direction from which they receive their beneficial advantages along with the necessary acceptance when thinking about the effects of ignoring consciousness. In the ignored states of the nation, something akin to that case had begun to occur, and it was necessary to respond on an as-needed basis.

The sun was setting over the vast expanse of the Indian subcontinent, painting the sky with hues of red and gold. As the country was gearing up for yet another night, something monumental was brewing on the horizon and that was the Bharat Mala Project. Weaving each state and each city together for its development as well as acting as its own hub for new opportunities. Connecting North with South and East with West was the early dream of our beloved Hon’ble Prime Minister. One never thought a small city in Madhya Pradesh will be acting as the center to pass through to reach Delhi or riding in the uncovered unknown district of Leh to reach the northeast part of India was just a possible dream. This Paryojana was conceived with ‘connectivity’ and ‘cure’ as their guiding principles and bringing the nation one step closer to overall growth. An ambitious project such as ‘Bharat-Mala’ accurately depicts India’s journey from Independence to Amrit Kaal. ‘Bharat Mala ‘, a massive connectivity link stretching over 83677 kilometers, was conceived with the goal of not only connecting India but also of repairing every flaw that contributed to the failure of the development path.

Roads are vital to any country’s development and they act as a foundation stone for its sustainable growth. Bharat Mala has not only activated its sustainable growth but with new technologies are reshaping the country’s economic growth. While making a mention of development it has always been a debate for discussion that the capitalist economy always lets go of their interest in the environment. But while thinking about the Bharat Mala project they thought about keeping consumer interest in mind which opens various doors to the Tourism department. Now a small Home Care service in Jagatsinghpur or a small houseboat owner from Jalpaiguri will be able to do his business with no marketing strategies and leave a positive impact on the local economy making 2014’s Manifesto his ideal to work with ‘Sabka Sath hi Sabka Vikas’.

This boost for local economies will be a major milestone for the development of rural communities as this will enable them to connect with the major markets of each city which will eventually lead to maximizing the ‘Made in India’ venture. With new technologies and advanced research for Bharat Mala, the power of recycling, reusing, and regrowing has been reformed and revitalized. These technologies benefit all stakeholders, including road users, authorities/government, concessionaires, and developers. 20 years back the government never saw the dawn of flagship programs like Project Management initiatives such as the use and reuse of plastic waste in bituminous pavement construction, then the use of project monitoring information systems (PMIS) for real-time project tracking and monitoring and tracking its minute to minute development and electronic toll collection via FASTag.With smoother highways and safer journeys, a country known for its population and its percentage of accident ratio will now be known for its accidental survival ratio. Who would have thought of a similar case in 2000 where the accident ratio was 5.9 percent of the population which has drastically decreased to 3.9 percent in the year 2022.

Since childhood it was just the ‘Golden Quadrilateral project’ which one studied and learnt about. It has its own benefits but when you are presented with 50 more corridors to reach your desired destination it gives a quick impact of options and opportunity. The cost of maintaining the nation’s roads and infrastructure will undoubtedly rise with the 85% increase in the number of corridors. But with 35 multi-modal logistics parks, the nation is now looking at a new horizon.The Horizon of developing cities during the phase of constructing roads itself showcases its early state of major showdown. The establishment of these Parks in 15 different locations across the nation will help to lower the project’s freight costs. Bharat mala has truly proven the exhibition of brilliancy in an idea, which showcases systematic intervention for greater impact. The country has reached its peak of its era and is still evolving in all aspects of prosperity, whether in terms of rapid growth and development or its socio-cultural relations with other countries.

The recent scenario showcases the country’s position pragmatic in terms of its decisions and developments which has steadily reached the state to match the scale of other developed nations, and by the end of ‘The Amrit Kaal,’ it will no longer be considered a developing nation, but rather a ‘Developed’ one.

The Bharat Mala Project however involves more than just building roads, bridges and tunnels. It is evidence of India’s unflinching dedication to progress and indomitable spirit. It represents a new era in which the expansion of infrastructure and economic growth go hand in hand. It is the real road to a nation’s development as well as the real journey of an endless ‘road not taken to the roads that lead you in the direction of a country’s development during the Amrit Kaal.

Author : Heena Kini

Author Description : Heena Kini has pursued her post graduation Leadership, political and governance from IIDL, Rambhai Mhalgi Prabodhini. She Absorbed three degrees in management, policy, and media and communications. Currently employed as a political strategist and analyst by one of the top public relations firms in the political consulting industry.

Disclaimer : The views, thoughts, or opinions expressed in this blogs belong solely to the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of author’s employer, organisation, committee or any other group or individual.

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