Emphasising that the bureaucracy cannot be blamed completely for delay in awarding projects, Union Minister for Road Transport, Highways and Shipping Nitin Gadkari today said political support is also needed to execute projects.
Interestingly, Gadkari on various occasions has criticised the bureaucracy for delaying approvals for large projects. "I agree the system (bureaucracy) is to be blamed for delaying approval processes, and at various fora, even I have talked about it. But I strongly feel that one cannot blame the system every time. Political support will also play a crucial role in this," he said while addressing a seminar on roads and highways here at the ongoing Make in India Week.
He said every time attempts are made to adopt new technologies or methods to ensure speedy execution of projects, there is criticism or lack of support from various strata of society.
"In such a situation, even bureaucrats are unwilling to adopt new methods and prefer sticking to the old tried-and-tested for taking up projects, fearing criticism and opposition...," he said.
"Political support will play a major role in this. If they do not support such innovations, even the system cannot function efficiently, which leads to delays in execution." Gadkari said there is need to create an atmosphere and environment conducive enough to adopt new technologies and initiatives that the Modi government intends to introduce. He also urged the private sector to participate in the government's vision to strengthen the road sector.
"To encourage private participation in the road sector, we have taken various initiatives and one of them is hybrid annuity model, wherein the government would contribute nearly 40 per cent of the project cost. If we get good response from the private sector for this model, we may award projects on PPP basis in the next one year," Gadkari added. He said there was a need to adopt techniques to reduce cost of construction, and the private sector can help by bringing in new technology.