India: Rural roads open up new opportunities in villages
India has one of the largest and densest road networks in the world, with a total of 3.3 million km. However, till the year 2000, around 30% of its population, or 300 million people, lacked access to all-weather roads. Moreover, a large part of the 2.7 million km network of rural roads was in poor condition. In late 2000, the Government of India launched its National Rural Roads Program (Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana or PMGSY) to improve rural connectivity in a systematic manner. Until the end of 2010, the program had added 300,000 kms of rural roads, and improved connectivity to over 73,000 habitations.