Now, BJP unveils its infrastructure development vision

April 21st, 2009 - 9:08 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata Party Bangalore, April 21 (IANS) On the eve of the second phase of the Lok Sabha polls, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Tuesday unveiled its vision document on infrastructure development as part of its manifesto for the general elections.
“I believe our country deserves infrastructure, both physical and social, that is second to none in the world and commensurate in quality and quantity with our goal of making the 21st century India’s century,” said BJP’s prime ministerial candidate L.K. Advani, releasing the document here.

Making a solemn commitment to expand and modernise the country’s infrastructure on a war footing, the party flags the success of two dream projects that were initiated during the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government under Atal Bihari Vajpayee, during 1998-2004.

“That we can think big and also implement big was demonstrated with the National Highways Development Project (NHDP) and the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (Prime Minister’s Rural Road Programme). If elected, we will be more ambitious and result-oriented than any previous government in New Delhi,” Advani asserted.

Lashing out at the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government for the tardy progress in infrastructure development, the document said less than 5 km of highway was built per day in the last five years as against 11 km per day during the NDA rule.

Reiterating that rapid infrastructure development was critical for accelerated economic growth, removal of unemployment and bridging the rural-urban divide, Advani said if elected, the BJP-led NDA government would speed up the implementation of NHDP by building 20 km of highways per day.

“If we form the next government, we will meet the infrastructure challenge with well thought out policies and programmes and implement them with a firm commitment to our stated theme of good governance, development and security,” Advani said.

The document identifies that the main constraint in infrastructure development is not as much the availability of finance as poor governance.

Faulty policy and legal framework, corruption, red tape, political interference, lack of intra-governmental coordination, judicial delays and lack of autonomy and accountability at the execution level have paralysed project delivery.

“We recognise that 80 percent of infrastructure development still requires public investment. This underscores the role of government in planning, financing and time-bound execution of projects, including those under the public-private partnership (PPP) framework.”

“The estimated investment needed to implement the infrastructure development projects is Rs.25 trillion ($500 billion) over the next five years. We will set up a national infrastructure facilitation and monitoring agency (NIFMA) to accelerate the implementation,” the party said.

The document also mentions recasting the Jawaharlal Nehru Urban Renewal Mission (JNURM) under the National Integrated Urban Renewal Mission (NIURM) into Jawaharlal Nehru Metro Renewal Mission, Sardar Vallabhai Patel District Centre Renewal Mission, Netaji Bose Tehsil Town Renewal Mission and Pavitra Bharat Teerthasthan Renewal Mission.

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