Mentioning that this year’s Budget focuses on the infrastructure sector, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said infrastructure development has always been an important pillar in the process of a country’s development.
“This year’s Budget will give new growth energy to the infrastructure sector. Infrastructure development has always been an important pillar in the process of a country’s development,” said PM Modi at a post-Budget webinar on ‘Infrastructure and Investment’. He said it was time for new responsibilities, possibilities, and bold decisions for each stakeholder.
“Under the National Infrastructure Pipeline, the government is aiming to invest Rs 110 lakh crore in the coming time. This is the time for new responsibilities, new possibilities, and bold decisions for each stakeholder,” said PM Modi.
The webinar was organised by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) as the Lead Ministry, in association with the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), the ministry of commerce and industry as the co-lead ministry.
Hitting out at the previous governments at the Centre, PM Modi said the thinking that “poverty is a virtue” impeded efforts towards the country’s infrastructure development.
“For decades, the thinking dominated in our country was that poverty is a virtue. It was because of this thinking that earlier governments faced difficulties in investing in the country’s infrastructure. Our government has enabled the country to shed this mindset as we are making record investments in modern infrastructure,” he said.
The PM underlined that the average annual construction of National Highways has been almost 2 times as compared to before 2014.
“Today, the average annual construction of National Highways has doubled as compared to 2014. Before 2014, every year 600 route kms of rail line used to be electrified. Today, it is about 4,000 kms. The number of airports has increased from 74 in 2014 to about 150,” said PM Modi.
Highlighting the Gati Shakti National Master Plan, he said it will rejuvenate the country’s infrastructure and multimodal logistics.
“Gati Shakti National Master Plan is a great tool to integrate economic and infrastructure planning and development,” PM Modi said.
He said that the stronger the country’s social infrastructure, the more will the talented and skilled youth finding jobs.
“The stronger our social infrastructure, the more will be the talented and skilled youth coming forward to work. That’s why it is very important to lay emphasis on skill development, project management, and finance skills,” he said.
The webinar was structured in the format of plenary inaugural and concluding sessions and split into three parallel breakout sessions. The breakout sessions covered suggestions on Budget announcements related to infrastructure and investment, their implementation and way forward.
According to the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, the three parallel breakout sessions — “Improving Logistics Efficiency via Multi-Modality and Filling Critical Infrastructure Gaps”, anchored by the Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways; “Planning on PM Gati Shakti National Master Plan”, anchored by the DPIIT and
“Infrastructure Development & Investment Opportunities” — were anchored by MoRTH.
The government, in the last few years, has been providing higher budgetary allocation to ensure the creation of world-class infrastructure across the country, the Ministry said in a statement.