As many as 241 infrastructure projects including those delayed due to land acquisition, forest clearances and other reasons, have led to cost overrun of Rs 1.55 lakh crore, as per official data.
The Statistics Ministry monitored 1,076 infrastructure projects, each worth Rs 150 crore or more across sectors such as power, railways and roads in March, 2016.
It said 6 projects were ahead of schedule, 258 were on schedule, 343 got delayed, 241 reported cost overrun, and 83 projects reported both time and cost overrun with respect to their original project implementation schedules.
“Total original cost of implementation of the 1,076 projects was Rs 12,38,517.07 crore and their anticipated completion cost is likely to be Rs 13,93,627.86 crore, which reflects overall cost overruns of Rs 1,55,110.79 crore (12.52% of original cost),” according to the project monitoring report for March.
As per the report, the expenditure incurred on these projects till March 2016 is Rs 5,75,677.42 crore which is 41.31 per cent of the anticipated cost of the projects.
However, it stated that the number of delayed projects decreases to 304 if delay is calculated on the basis of latest schedule of completion.
As many as 36 such projects have been sanctioned without original commissioning date and for 433 projects neither the year of commissioning nor the tentative gestation period has been reported.
Out of 343 delayed projects, 65 projects have overall delay in the range of 1 to 12 months, 62 projects have delay in the range of 13 to 24 months, 146 projects have delay in the range of 25 to 60 months and 70 projects have delay of 61 months and above.
During the month, 343 projects are delayed with respect to their original schedules, and 57 projects have reported additional delays vis-à-vis their date of completion reported in the previous month. Of these 57 projects, 14 are mega projects costing Rs 1,000 crore and above.
However, the report stated that in comparison to April 2015, number of projects reporting cost overruns has gone down from 30.47 per cent to 22.40 per cent, whereas projects reporting time overruns have decreased from 42.61 per cent to 31.88 per cent.
In April 2015, out of 758 projects on the monitor of the Statistics Ministry, 231 projects had reported cost overruns and 323 projects reported time overruns.
Speedy implementation of projects assumes significance in view of government’s push to move towards high growth trajectory of over 8 per cent and touch double digit mark in few years.
The reasons for time overruns as reported by various project implementing agencies include delays in land acquisition, forest clearance and supply of equipment.