Connecting villages and cities all over the India, making model villages and smart cities, perhaps this is what Narendra Modi’s slogan ‘Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas’ means. This was also mentioned in India’s former President APJ Abdul Kalam’s ‘Vision 2020’. The freedom fighters dreamt of a country like this where the villages and cities are technologically and economically advanced to fulfil needs and vision of the citizens. In a country like India, where there is the biggest rail and road network with seamless connectivity, development is in safe hands. It was all started by former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, who proposed the idea of Golden Quadrilateral Road connecting the four metros in the country which gave way for connecting different parts of country and paving a path for a completely new idea for development. Prime Minister Modi is following on the footsteps of his political idol and has proposed a road network called ‘Bharat Mala’.

Bharat Mala: PM Narendra Modi's planned  5,000km Road Network

Government of India has proposed a 5000 km road network connecting untouched areas along borders and coastal areas. This is an important move to push development and economical activities in areas which are considered to be economically backward. The Government has planned to invest Rs.50,000 crore in a move which would also create a lot of job opportunities in villages and small towns. India has endless connectivity of road and rail network and this plan will build missing links and extend the network to places which were not connected by a proper planning to the external world. This is one of the topics to be discussed under the ‘work plan’ by the transport ministry of the country. This road network will cover areas in bordering states of neighbouring countries- Nepal, Bangladesh, China, Pakistan and Bhutan besides covering vast coastline of the country. The network will also connect various number of ports which comes under the ‘Sagar Mala’ project modernising coastal areas. This move is also crucial for strategic reasons along border lines which would help defence forces of India. The major plan consists of connecting the western Gujrat with the north-east state of Mizoram going through 10 other states. Rajasthan will get the maximum boost with a proposed road network of 1000 km. States like Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Odisha will also get a substantial share of this plan. The Government also plans to take help of Border Roads Organisation (BRO) to build up roads on tougher terrains. The width of roads will depend on the traffic demands of different cities and towns in these states. With several other organisations giving a helping hand, it would be a dream come true for many as this plan will help facilitate trade, communication, connectivity that would help to increase the rate of nation’s development and growth. The Government has been positive and keen to start this project in this year and hopeful to complete it in next five years. The officials have started identifying the stretches and the final preparation of the plan will start soon. There has also been a start by the centre to consult State governments on this proposed plan, to get their views and to take these states on board as soon as possible.

This move is also crucial for strategic reasons along border lines which would help defence forces of India. The major plan consists of connecting the western Gujrat with the north-east state of Mizoram going through 10 other states. Rajasthan will get the maximum boost with a proposed road network of 1000 km. States like Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Odisha will also get a substantial share of this plan. The Government also plans to take help of Border Roads Organisation (BRO) to build up roads on tougher terrains. The width of roads will depend on the traffic demands of different cities and towns in these states. With several other organisations giving a helping hand, it would be a dream come true for many as this plan will help facilitate trade, communication, connectivity that would help to increase the rate of nation’s development and growth. The Government has been positive and keen to start this project in this year and hopeful to complete it in next five years. The officials have started identifying the stretches and the final preparation of the plan will start soon. There has also been a start by the centre to consult State governments on this proposed plan, to get their views and to take these states on board as soon as possible.

Going from numerous advantages there are a handful of limitations as well. There has also been a suggestion by the Transport minister, Nitin Gadkari to construct cemented highways instead of usual bituminous ones in the country. This would be a difficult task as production of cement is very low in border areas and constructing cemented roadways will be a huge task. Another disadvantage of planning such a proposal is the huge investment by the government which would again be a case of scrutiny from some groups. There have been differences both ideological and strategic, among the neighbours about building road and rail network on border areas. It would require a proper plan by the government with help of other organisations with defence forces to lay this network and administer it in future. The consultations between Centre and State governments would also require lot of time agreeing to common terms.

Despite knowing that it would be a humongous task to implement this plan, there has been a positive start by the government. The country seems to be in safe hands with a government who is planning for a bright future for the citizens and increasing the rate of development of the nation. Now the ball lies in the court of organisations and common people to realise the dreams and work for a cause which would help the country to be on a track to success and fast development. A good start will definitely improve standard of living in country’s villages and towns because victory comes to those who dare to dream.

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