In Big Infrastructure Push, PM Modi Is Watching Four Ministries

  Prime Minister Narendra Modi has outlined a plan to put four infrastructure ministries on top gear with his own office keeping regular tabs on their progress through monthly meetings.

Sources say Mr Modi has asked Surface Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari to prepare for a big push in the infrastructure sector, which was given top billing not just in his campaign for the recent national election but also when the new government revealed its agenda after taking charge.

Four ministries - Civil Aviation, Railways, Road and Shipping - have been asked to work together. Sources say Mr Gadkari will call a meeting of these ministries once a month.

Representatives of other ministries such as Finance, Defence and Environment will be asked to attend these meetings when required. 

Sources have told NDTV that a white paper has reportedly blamed the environment ministry and the Department of Financial Services for stalling projects and bringing the road sector to its knees.

The first meeting of the ministries is likely to take place next week. Besides the ministers and secretaries concerned, Cabinet Secretary Ajit Kumar Seth and the PM's Principal Secretary Nripendra Mishra will be at every meeting.

"The mandate is to work for speedy implementation of infrastructure projects and resolving bottlenecks," an official told NDTV.

Mr Modi's 10-year plan to improve infrastructure includes building smaller airports in towns, a high-speed train network, revamping trains and modernizing ports.

The government is planning a multi-billion dollar infrastructure fund to push investments.

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