India’s Infrastructure Demand: The Much-Needed Effort

Infrastructure of any nation helps decide the progress of the nation to a very large extent. A country with good infrastructure can be classified as a developed country whereas the other countries have little finance to spend on such luxuries and hence, keep struggling in the developing class of nations. Infrastructure contributes a great deal to sustained economic development.

Physical infrastructure consists of transportation, power and communication whereas social infrastructure which is partly primary services includes water supply, sanitation, sewage disposal, education and health. While physical infrastructure helps determine growth; social infrastructure helps determine the standard of living. With globalization, there lay a huge challenge to the Indian government of creation of a superior infrastructure in all aspects on a colossal scale. So far, India has risen to this challenge; but we definitely need more!

Analysts say the infrastructure sector as a whole needs to grow 8 per cent a year, instead of 5 per cent at the moment, to meet the government’s vision of even higher growth, more jobs and better basic living conditions for 260 million poor.According to Prime Minister Mr. Manmohan Singh – India is aiming to achieve 10-per cent annual GDP growth by the year 2011-12, but the country needed over $300 billion to upgrade its infrastructure over the next few years.

Following real life experiences, for rapid and effective infrastructural development, India should draw inspiration from China and the Chinese commitment to the development of Expressways, for instance. According to a recent newspaper report, when India completed 6000 km of her Expressways in six years, China had done 40,000 km within that time. Also, the Indian authorities seem to be tied up amongst themselves over worthless debates on privatization of airlines for instance instead of concentrating the same amount of effort, time and finances towards more concrete brainstorming and making way for rapid infrastructural development.

Everything comes for a cost and for infrastructural development within India too, one requires huge amounts of fund. This fund can be generated by involvement of industrialists and politically influential class of people. Of course, such a combination is deadly as it invites corruption of the first order however, there is no such non-corrupt sphere within the workings of Indian government! Ultimately, people using a better quality infrastructural service will be willing to pay for it and thus, cost can also be generated by the users. Unless a strong political will and commitment is not put to force, this suggestion shall just remain on paper.