If there is one minister in the Narendra Modi government who has delivered in spades, it is Nitin Gadkari, Union Minister for Road Transport, Shipping and Waterways. While there are several other ministers who have performed extremely well – Piyush Goyal, Dharmendra Pradhan, Sushma Swaraj and Suresh Prabhu, to name just a few – no one has surmounted challenges like Gadkari has.
Consider the roadblocks he negotiated. The United Progressive Alliance (UPA) left behind a Land Acquisition Act that made road acquisitions exorbitantly expensive. Initial attempts to amend the act were junked by a united opposition which used its majority in the Rajya Sabha to send it to a committee that effectively killed the amendments.
The UPA also left behind a raft of incomplete and unviable road contracts, and it was left to Gadkari to scrap some of them and re-engineer the schemes into hybrids to make them work.
In his four years at the helm, Gadkari has not only made highway building the most important route to pushing growth at a time when private capital is missing in action, but also rejuvenated the idea of building waterways to improve surface transport options for India. Read More