Special – New National Highway numbers

Old National Highway numbers at Mangalore

Last night I was with my friends on the way to Manipal. Suddenly, a Kerala registered Mahindra Scorpio stopped their vehicle in order to ask for directions to go Goa and confirmed if they were on the right path and they also said that even natives are unaware, After getting into the car I realized even my friends were unaware of the new newly-named highway ‘National Highway 66’. This inspired me to write this article as many people are unaware of the newly-renamed highway numbers.

This highway connects Panvel – Kochi road was formerly known as NH 17 until recently when it was renamed ‘NH 66’ in April 2011. Since the time the highway was renamed, the signboards giving information about the signboards are not yet completely changed. This had created some confusion with tourists from other states who are unaware of the change in the naming of the highway.

New National Highway number at Mangalore

And I also found a similar article at Mangalorean.com. About a motorcycle tourist from Tamil Nadu touring in the late evening time, who had come to Mangalore and wanting to go to Mumbai was asked about this confusion. He said that even he was not aware of the re-naming and knew from people in Mangalore that he had to ride on NH 66 to get to Mumbai, so when he followed that road he lost trace of NH 66 before Surathkal (Mangalore nearby). Hence, he said that he had to turn back and look if he had missed a diversion to NH 66 but he could not trace any such diversion and landed up in Mangalore city again.

Today (June 10th 2011, Friday) a hot news that Nethravati bridge connecting Ullal with Mangalore collapsed on national highway 66 (formerly NH17). A 15 feet wall built out of concrete and granite blocks collapsed into a heap of rubble following heavy rains, as a result the traffic restricted to one way on the national highway 66. Luckily no damage was reported to the main plinth beams of the bridge and authorities have ruled out any danger to the main bridge.

India has a huge network of national highways. The national highways have a total length of 70, 934 kms. Indian highways cover 2% of the total road network of India and carry 40% of the total traffic. The entire highway network of India is managed by the National Highway Authority of India which is responsible for development and maintenance of highways.

Old National Highway numbers at Mangalore

The longest highway in India is NH7 (2,369 km) which stretches from Varansi in Uttar Pradesh to Kanyakumari in the southern most point of Indian mainland. The shortest highway is NH47A (6 km) which stretches from Ernakulam to Kochi (both old national highway numbers).

In the year 1947 the total length of the national highways was 21,378 kilometers, which is now increased to 70,934 kilometers. This will be increased to more than one lakh kilometers by the year 2021. Hence keeping in mind of the new highways and on the view of expanding these identification these measures have been taken.

It’s really happened. The Department of Road Transport and Highways of the Govt of India has become all “logical” and introduced a new numbering system for the country’s national highways. Why?

“……existing number of National Highway does not give any indication of its location and direction. Therefore, Ministry has adopted a systematic numbering of National Highways…… It will indicate the direction of National Highways whether it is East-West or North-South and also the geographical region where it is located.”

So to view or download PDF file of New National Highway numbers in both the languages English and Hindi using PDF reader click here. (Yes, I know Team-bhp as posted this a year ago).

Image credit – Mangalorean.com