Wednesday, December 1, 2010


Road Transport in India

India’s road network is third largest in the world. The total length of roads is more than 33 lakh km.

For the purpose of maintenance and construction, roads are classified into

· National Highways: are maintained by the Central Government

· State Highways: are maintained by the respective state government

· District Highways: are maintained by the respective District Board.

· Village Roads : they are mostly unsurfaced, narrow, zig-zag

· Border Roads: the Border Road Development Board was set up in 1960 to speed up economic development in the underdetainous and desert areas. Another objective was to maintain essential supplies for defence personnel. The Border Roads organization is the executive wing which is responsible for construction & maintenance.

· International Highways: are the highways which have been constructed with aid from the World Bank, under an agreement with the economic n social Commission for Asia- Pacific (ESCAP). Their purpose is to link India’s important roads with those of the neighboring countries, viz. Pakistan, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh and Myanmar.

The present length of the National Highways in India is approx. 45,000 km. They constitute only 2% of the total road length and carries nearly 40% of the road traffic.

Some of the Important National Highways are:

  • NH 1

New Delhi – Ambala – Jalandhar – Amritsar.

· NH 2

Delhi – Mathura – Agara – Kanpur – Allahabad – Varanasi – Kolkata

· NH 3

Agra – Gwalior – Nasik – Mumbai

· NH 4

Thane and Chennai via Pune and Belgaun.

· NH 5

Kolkata – Chennai

· NH 6

Kolkata – Dhule

· NH 7

Varanasi – Kanyakumari (longest highway of India.)

· NH 8

Delhi – Mumbai (via Jaipur, Baroda and Ahmadabad)

· NH 9

Mumbai – Vijaywada

· NH 10

Delhi – Fazilka

· NH 11

Agra – Bikaner

· NH 12

Jabalpur – Jaipur

· NH 24

Delhi – Lucknow

· NH 27

Allahabad – Varanasi

· NH 28

Barauni – Lucknow

· NH 29

Gorakhpur – Varanasi

· NH 56

Lucknow – Varanasi

The Golden Quadrilateral Project connecting the four Metropolitan cities of Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and Kolkata covering a total distance of 5846 km is currently being processed. It is the first phase of the National Highways Development Project (NHDP). Total cost of the project is Rs 300 billion, funded largely by the government’s special petroleum product tax revenues and government borrowing. As of June ’08, 5669 km of the intended road has been 4-laned.

The North South – East West Corridor (NS-EW) is the largest ongoing expressway project in India. It is the second phase of the National Highways Development Project (NHDP), and consists of building 7300 kilometers of four/six lane expressways connecting Srinagar, Kanyakumari, Porbandar and Silchar. The final completion date of the project has been set as December 2009.

Maharashtra has the maximum length of surfaced roads in India.

Road Density of India

The length of a road per 100 sq. km. is known as density of roads.

The length of a road per 100 sq. km. is known as density of roads. In 1951 road density was 12, which had shot up to 63 by 1997-98. But it is highly irregular all through the country.

· The lowest density of below 10 is found in the precipitous states of Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Mizoram and Meghalaya.

· The next higher group with a density between 10 and 20 covers Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh. Orissa, Bihar, Sikkim, Assam, Manipur and Tripura.

· The next higher group with a density between 20 and 40 covers the states of Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Maharashtra and Gujarat.

· Finally the group with a density of 40 and above comprises the states of Punjab and Haryana in the north and Tamil Nadu and Kerala in the south.

The road density of Japan is 14 times higher, compared to India. And the ratio between the length of roads and total population is 33 times higher in the U.S.A., compared to India.


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