Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the PM Gati Shakti, a ‘National Master Plan’ worth Rs 100 crore for multi-modal connectivity, on 13 October 2021. The Plan, envisioned by the Prime Minister, is a campaign to lend more speed (Gati) and power (Shakti) to projects by connecting all concerned departments on one platform. This way, infrastructure schemes of various ministries and state governments will be designed and executed with a common vision.
The Gati Shakti Master Plan will use geo-mapping and real-time data in one centralised portal to ensure that key departments and states have visibility over major projects being planned, especially the ones which have multi-sectoral and multi-regional reach.
Sixteen Central government departments, including Railways, Roads and Highways, Petroleum and Gas, Power, Telecom, Shipping, Aviation and others will be a part of this initiative.
Each and every department will now have visibility of each other’s activities providing critical data while planning and execution of projects in a comprehensive manner. Through this, different departments will be able to prioritise their projects through cross–sectoral interactions.
It is apparent that most of the mega projects under Rs 110 lakh crore, the National Infrastructure Pipeline will be monitored under Gati Shakti.
Gati Shakti will incorporate infrastructure schemes of various Union Ministries and state governments – Bharatmala Pariyojana, Sagarmala, UDAN, inland waterways, dry/land ports, etc. The plan will also ensure quick completion of works with cost efficiency. The idea is to get all relevant stakeholders aligned for creating the right size infrastructure at a suitable location expeditiously.
Targets under Gati Shakti
The plan includes 11 industrial corridors, achieving Rs 1.7 lakh crore turnover in defence production and having 38 electronics manufacturing clusters and 109 pharma clusters by 2024-25.
The National Master Plan fixes targets up to 2024-25 for all infrastructure ministries. For the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, the target is to have national highways of two lakh km, completion of four- or six-lane national highways of 5,590 km along coastal areas and all state capitals in the North-East to be connected with four-lane national highways or two two-lane national highways.
For the Railways, the target by 2024-25 is to handle cargo of 1,600 million tonne from 1,210 million tonne in 2020, decongesting 51 percent of the Railway network by completing additional lines and implementation of two Dedicated Freight Corridors (DFCs).
In Civil Aviation, the target is to double the existing aviation footprint to have a total of 220 airports, heliports and water aerodromes by 2025 which will mean building additional 109 such facilities by then. In Shipping, the target by 2024-25 is to have total cargo capacity to be handled at the ports at 1,759 million tpa from 1,282 million tpa in 2020.
The gas pipeline network in the country is aimed to be doubled to 34,500 km by 2024-25 by building an additional 17,000 km long trunk pipeline connecting major demand and supply centres for industries, as per the plan. In Power Lines, total transmission network by 2024-25 is targeted to be 4.52 lakh circuit km and renewable energy capacity will be increased to 225 GW from 87.7 GW presently.
The six pillars of PM Gati Shakti – National Master Plan
- Comprehensiveness: It will include all the existing and planned initiatives of various ministries and departments with one centralised portal. Each and every department will now have visibility of each other’s activities providing critical data while planning and executing projects in a comprehensive manner.
- Prioritisation: Through this, different departments will be able to prioritise their projects through cross-sectoral interactions.
- Optimisation: The National Master Plan will assist different ministries in planning for projects after identification of critical gaps. For transportation of goods from one place to another, the plan will help in selecting the most optimum route in terms of time and cost.
- Synchronisation: Individual ministries and departments often work in silos. There is a lack of coordination in planning and implementation of the project, resulting in delays. PM Gati Shakti will help in synchronising activities of each department, as well as of different layers of governance, in a holistic manner by ensuring coordination of work between them.
- Analytical: The plan will provide entire data at one place with GIS-based spatial planning and analytical tools having over 200 layers, enabling better visibility to the executing agency.
- Dynamic: All ministries and departments will now be able to visualise, review and monitor the progress of cross-sectoral projects, through the GIS platform, as satellite imagery will give on-ground progress periodically, and progress of the projects will be updated on a regular basis on the portal. It will help in identifying vital interventions for enhancing and updating the Master Plan.
Going forward, PM Gati Shakti will address past issues through institutionalising holistic planning for stakeholders for major infrastructure projects. Instead of planning & designing separately in silos, infra projects are now expected to be designed and executed with a common vision.
Economic Zones like textile clusters, pharmaceutical clusters, defence corridors, electronic parks, industrial corridors, fishing clusters, agri zones will also be covered to improve connectivity & make Indian businesses more competitive.
Citing India’s overall high logistics cost, estimated at a steep 13 percent of GDP, PM outlined that unplanned development had left ports without rail lines, manufacturing hinterland without access to coasts and farmers without recourse to markets. As a result, the cost of production goes up and India’s export competitiveness goes up, while food inflation rises.
The plan will also leverage technology extensively, including spatial planning tools with ISRO imagery developed by Bhaskaracharya National Institute for Space Applications and Geoinformatics.