Sanjay Kumar Sinha

Infrastructure is a hallmark of economic prosperity and the overall development of a nation. Deemed the foundation for a nation’s growth, infrastructure development could play a pivotal role in helping India achieve its 2047 vision of becoming a Vikasit Bharat, transitioning to a developed nation with an economy growing from USD 3 trillion to USD 40 trillion. The rupees spent on infrastructure development have a multiplier effect on the country’s GDP, from widening the size of the market to improving the quality of life for its millions of citizens. Despite facing various stumbling blocks such as regulatory hurdles, socio-political issues, financial and resource constraints, and geographical vastness, India has set up many milestones on its infrastructure landscape in the past decade. From the refurbishment of waterways and aviation to the revitalization of railways and highways, the country has witnessed sustainable and innovative infra boosts, benefitting industries across the sector.

In its bid to give impetus to infrastructure development in the past few years with reformed policies, the Government of India has augmented the infra budget by around 75 percent post-COVID. The allocation of 3.3 percent of GDP to the infrastructure field underscores the government’s commitment, especially focusing on the transport and logistics sectors. Roads and highways take the lion’s share, followed by railways and urban public transportation. Setting an ambitious target of developing a 2 lakh-km national network by 2025, the expansion of airports to 220, 35 Multi-Modal Logistics Parks, and the operationalization of 23 waterways by 2030 are among the praiseworthy initiatives of the government, which have set a strong foundation to build a new India. Ahead of the 2024 Lok Sabha elections, the inauguration of path-breaking infrastructure projects is a tell-tale sign of India’s promising development trajectory. With initiatives such as the Bengaluru-Chennai Expressway, Western Dedicated Freight Corridor, Noida International Airport, Navi Mumbai International Airport, and the Mumbai Trans Harbour Link, India has rolled up its sleeves to unlock a new corridor for economic growth.

Sensing the importance of infrastructure for the growth of the nation, comprehensive plans with strategic investments have been laid out. The government walked the talk on major initiatives such as the PM Gatishakti National Master Plan, aiming at multimodal connectivity infrastructure; Bharatmala Pariyojana, focusing on developing a robust highway network; the Smart Cities Mission, seeking to develop sustainable and citizen-friendly urban areas; the Sagarmala Project, gearing up for port modernization and coastal development; Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana, zeroing in on providing affordable housing; UDAN, setting sights on enhancing air connectivity to regional airports in small towns; the Metro Network, seen as a game-changer for urban transportation; and the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, impacting urban infrastructure through cleanliness, waste management, and proper sanitation. The continuous work on these projects has created a conducive ecosystem for economic activities, attracting investments, creating job opportunities, and bettering the quality of life for 140 crore Indians as well.

All in all, India is continuously marching towards becoming a global economic powerhouse. In this pursuit, robust infrastructure plays a key role. The budgetary allocation and collective development of all infrastructural facets of the country will cumulatively bolster the socio-economic landscape of India. According to studies by the National Institute of Public Finance and Policy as well as the Reserve Bank of India, for every rupee spent on the development of infrastructure, GDP registers a 2.5-to-3.5-rupee gain. Its cascading impact gives a boost to all spheres of the economy. As India continues to invest in its infrastructure, it is not only enhancing economic opportunities but also improving the quality of life for its citizens. The journey towards a new, economically vibrant India is well underway, supported by innovative initiatives, strategic planning, and a commitment to sustainable development. The ongoing infrastructure transformation is setting a strong foundation for India’s future, paving the way for sustained growth and prosperity.

Views expressed by: Sanjay Kumar Sinha, Founder and Managing Director of Chaitanya Projects Consultancy


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