Friday, October 05, 2012

How does a road become a road to development


For quite long I have wondered how a Road can truly be a road to nation's development. After all, in a plain one-dimensional view a road is but a construction from coal tar to prevent the busting of your vehicle's tyres. But the Anti-corruption crusaders also keep sighting the example of the poor road to exemplify how their legislation will help repair the road and put the nation on the path of development. That forces me to take another view, 2-dimensional view of what a road can be doing in a little deeper sense. To run the vehicles faster and reach home the consignments faster than before. And So? Great speed means greater development? Is it so? Then, can't they, in alternation, launch out the consignment a little earlier than before to ensure that there is no delay. no.  It is as if to say the country has all it's commodity travelling on the road all the while.
    They story of Road is not at all about reaching home the cargo faster. Definitely not , and because the country is not 'dwelling on the road ', proverbially 'living off the streets', by begging, that one should mistakenly think that the repaired improved road will help the street-walkers and the beggars do their business better.
All developed nations have a real wonderful and inviting road. The glimpse of development actually reflects out from every road we see in the nation. Then how does the road indexes the development.
  Actually what it takes to repair and improve the road is far more that what this 2-dimensional view tells us. Roads get damaged because there is less value of human life in that country. To make a good road, you need to have engineers who know and appreciate the worth of human lives who would be driving out on that road. You need to have high-skill , well-trained and authentically licensed drivers who do not overload their lorries, who maintain their lorries, who keep check on the engine power and engine emissions, who are paid well and who are given enough rest at the motels when they are driving. For a safe road you need enough overpass for the pedestrians to cross over without haggling with the traffic. You need educated people who don't drive on their cattle onto the road. you need illumination which is not obtained by depriving people of the electric power in their homes. You need drivers who can read the road signs, and who comply with the hand-signs, who know why it is important to give way to Ambulances, Police and the Fire trucks. This is where investments will also have to work to make the road a safer place. Once you have them in your road drivers, in this new 3-dimensional perspective you would have become a developed nation. These all achievements together make up the infrastructure which otherwise all the people keep demanding all the while when they talk of road, but only as the strip of coal tar.