403 infrastructure projects show cost overruns of Rs 4.05 lakh crore owing to delays

Numerous reasons are cited for the delay

Project delays, Infrastructure projects, Delay in tendering, Geological surprises, Forest/environment clearances, Lack of infrastructure support, Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation

As many as 403 infrastructure projects each worth Rs 150 crore or more have shown cost overruns of over Rs 4.05 lakh crore due to delays and other reasons.

The Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation monitors infrastructure projects worth Rs 150 crore and above. Of the 1,686 projects, 403 reported cost overruns and 530 time escalation.

The total original cost of implementation of the 1,686 projects was Rs 20,66,771.94 crore and their anticipated completion cost is likely to be Rs 24,71,947.66 crore, which reflects overall cost overruns of Rs 4,05,175.72 crore. This is an increase of 19.60% of the original cost.

The expenditure incurred on these projects till March 2020 is Rs 11,20,696.16 crore, which is 45.34 percent of the anticipated cost of the projects.

However, the number of delayed projects decreases to 452 if the delay is calculated on the basis of the latest schedule of completion. Moreover, for 857 projects neither the year of commissioning nor the tentative gestation period has been reported.

Out of the 530 delayed projects, 155 have overall delay in the range of one to 12 months, 114 reflect delay of 13 to 24 months, 148 show delay in the range of 25 to 60 months and 113 projects show delay of 61 months and above.

The average time overrun in these 530 delayed projects is 41.16 months.

The reasons for time overruns reported by various project implementing agencies are delay in land acquisition, obtaining forest/environment clearances and lack of infrastructure support and linkages.

Also, there are other reasons like delay in tie-up of project financing, in finalisation of detailed engineering, change in scope, delay in tendering, ordering and equipment supply, law and order problems, geological surprises, pre-commissioning teething troubles and contractual issues, among others.

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