Setu Bharatam Project

Government has launched Setu Bharatam Programme to replace Railway Crossing on National Highways by Road over Bridges (ROBs) /Road Under Bridges(RUBs).

Setu Bharatam Project
Setu Bharatam Project
Setu Bharatam Project Launch Date: Mar 4, 2016

Setu Bharatam Project

In a continuous and conscious effort to improve the infrastructure of the country, the Government of India has been coming up with various projects and advances. Setu Bharatam Project is one such initiative. The Setu Bharatam scheme worth ₹102 billion ($1.5 billion US dollars) aims to streamline the loopholes in existing bridges while refurbishing the highways to eradicate traffic congestion and promote easy and safe commute.

In this article, let’s have a closer look at the Setu Bharatam project details, its aims, benefits, objectives and more.

Table of contents

  • Setu Bharatam Project Overview
  • Objectives of Setu Bharatam Project
  • Benefits of Setu Bharatam Scheme
  • States Benefited from Setu Bharatam Project
  • Setu Bharatam Programme Facts
  • Setu Bhartam Cost and Timeframe
  • Necessary Upgrades for the Infrastructure
  • Read More About Govt Projects and Infrastructure
  • FAQs
Setu Bharatam Project
Date of Launching 4th March 2016
Launched By PM Narendra Modi
Government Ministry Ministry of Road Transport and Highways
Year of completion of Setu Bharatam 2019

Setu Bharatam Project Overview

A ₹102 billion project, Setu Bharatam, was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 4th March 2019 to escalate road safety throughout the country. The aim was to develop 208 rail under and over bridges (RUB and ROB, respectively) to make it convenient for commuters and travellers.

Along with it, the project also focuses on fixing and repairing 1500 dilapidated bridges out of a total of 1,50,000 existing bridges across the country. While building new bridges in place of the existing ones proved to be both time and cost-intensive, the smart decision to revamp them makes way for a quick wrap-up of the work, cuts down the cost, and also prevents land acquisition.

New development plans for those bridges would also have caused the government to clear the railways and block prominent rails, resulting in unnecessary road traffic. 

Objectives of Setu Bharatam Project

The Setu Bharatam Yojana was established to overhaul all the National Highways constructed in the British era, freeing them from railway crossing lines under a stipulated timeline. The authorities also outlined the objectives of the project under this scheme. Let’s see what they were below.

  • To construct a total of 208 rail under and over bridges on all the National Highways across the country and remove the railway crossings.
  • To reconstruct or revamp 1500 bridges out of 1,50,000 existing ones across the country.
  • Executed under the Bridge Management System, another objective of this project was to make the total of 1,50,000 existing bridges visible on the map of India. 
  • Ensure improved quality of bridges to eradicate accidents occurring due to previous faulty construction.  
  • To build a team that would assess the quality of the bridges and improve the condition of the faulty bridges.
  • Initiate the construction of more bridges to reduce traffic congestion on existing bridges and lessen the difficulty in commuting.
  • To implement scientific technologies and methods for longitude, latitude, and distance measurement and discover more sustainable and unique materials and designs for bridge construction.

Benefits of Setu Bharatam Scheme

Here are six major ways in which the Setu Bharatam Scheme has augmented commute and traffic conditions in the country. 

  • Under the project, the roads were revamped by replacing the raw materials, widening and reinforcing them gradually.
  • It has made travelling safer and comfortable for the commuters by improving the quality of the bridges.
  • The overbridges have improved connectivity with the cities helping in saving more time during the commute.
  • It has been reported that since its inauguration in 2019, over 50 per cent of road accidents have been prevented by March 2020. 
  • The age-old infrastructure has now been made vigorous and robust.
  • It has helped the country to take one step forward towards modernisation.

States Benefited from Setu Bharatam Project

A total of 208 bridges have been constructed all over the country. Have a look at the table to understand the division of these bridges across different states that have further optimised the traffic in these areas.

State - ROBs covered under Setu Bharatam program 

Andhra Pradesh - 33

Assam - 12

Bihar - 20

Chattisgarh - 5

Gujarat - 8

Haryana - 10

Himachal Pradesh - 5 

Jharkhand -11 

Karnataka - 17 

Kerala - 4

Madhya Pradesh - 6 

Maharashtra - 12 

Odisha - 4 

Punjab - 10 

Rajasthan - 9 

Tamil Nadu - 9

Uttarakhand - 2 

Uttar Pradesh - 9

West Bengal - 22 

Setu Bharatam Programme Facts

A glance at some of the essential facts of the Setu Bharatam India project:

  • The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways appointed a special committee for the purpose of the Setu Bharatam Yojana, known as the Indian Bridge Management System (IBMS).
  • Eleven consultancy firms were also appointed for the same.
  • The Indian Bridge Management System conducted numerous surveys to make a complete list of all the bridges in the country. This was done using Mobile Inspection Units. It reduced the amount of expenditure and increased the efficiency of highway utilisation.
  • 50,000 bridges had been constructed by the mid of 2016, which was a great achievement.

Setu Bhartam Cost and Timeframe

The total cost of the Setu Bharatam Pariyojana was computed to be ₹102 billion. The Government of India laid out the plan of the project in 2016. Meeting its deadline, the Setu Bharatam program was completed in 2019. PM Narendra Modi launched the project in March 2019.

Necessary Upgrades for the Infrastructure

Even though the Setu Bharatam program has completed its target with flying colours and improved the infrastructure and condition of the general transportation in the country, certain factors still need to be taken into consideration by the ministry.

  • Bypassing the cities and towns that come between the way of these highways.
  • Improving the connection of the existing highways to the possible neighbouring village roads and districts.
  • Having four-lane highways.
  • Installing street lights and avoiding blind curves to improve the condition of accident-prone areas.


    Is Setu Bharatam completed?

    Yes, the Setu Bharatam project was completed in 2019.

    What is the aim of Setu Bharatam?

    The end goal of the Setu Bharatam project is to make all the National Highways sans railway level crossings by 2019.

    How many states have the Setu Bharatam Project benefitted?

    The Setu Bharatam Project has benefited 19 states since its completion.

    How many bridges were built under the Setu Bharatam Project?

    Approximately 1500 bridges have been rebuilt under the Setu Bharatam Project.