8th Five Year Plan (Vol-2)
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Agricultural and Allied Activities || Rural Development and Poverty Alleviation || Irrigation, Command Area Development and Flood Control || Environment and Forests || Industry and Minerals || Village and Small Industries and Food Processing Industries || Labour and Labour Welfare || Energy || Transport || Communication, Information and Broadcasting || Education, Culture and Sports || Health and Family Welfare || Urban Development || Housing, Water Supply and Sanitation || Social Welfare || Welfare and Development of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes || Special Area Development Programmes || Science and Technology || Plan Implementation and Evaluation




9.15.1 A national merchant marine fleet is vital for the country, given the geographical configuration of the Indian subcontinent and the need for the country to play a positive economic role in the international market. Almost 98 percent of the country's overseas trade, in terms of volume, is moved by sea. There is also a relatively smaller volume of domestic traffic carried by coastal shipping.

Indian Shipping and the Maritime Trade

9.15.2 The international maritime shipping industry iiad into a prolonged spell of recession in the last decade, interrupted by only short spells of relief. The shipping industry was able to emerge from this period of slump only in 1987.

9.15.3 During the Seventh Plan, the main thrust was to build a modern efficient fleet through replacement of over-aged and uneconomic fleet by modern vessels as well as diversification, of fleet through acquisition of specialised and container carriers. Although the objective was to raise the tonnage from 6.36 million Gross Registered Tonnege (GRT) at the beginning of the seventh plan, to 7.5 million GRT at the end of the Seventh Plan, a marginal reduction took place in the net tonnage While there was a gross addition of 2.1 million, 2.5 million tonnes was scrapped. The main reason for lower acquisition levels was the weak freight market, which, in turn, led to ability on the part of Indian shipping companies to generate adequate funds for augmenting their tonnage. The net tonnage presently held by the Indian fleet is around 6 million GRT (9.7 million Dead Weight Tonnage (DWT).

Shipping Corporation of India (SCI)

9.15.4 The public sector Shipping Corporation of India accounted for 52.6% of the total Indian fleet strength of 6.36 million GRT at the beginning of the Seventh Plan, The SCI's fleet holding reduced to 48% or 2.89 Million GRT (4.86 million DWT) by March 1992. The reduction in SCI fieet, both in terms of absolute tonnage as also percentage share in the Indian fleet is due to various factors, the most prominent bcin;:, the lengthy procedure lor approving acquisition of tonnage and foreign exchange crunch.

9.15.5 In spite of  these constraints, the financial profile of SCI shows a welcome trend since 1987. The gross internal resources of the Corportion were Rs.198 crores in 1990-91. It is expected to rise to Rs.257 crores in 1991-92 The total internal resource generation of the Corporation during the Seventh Plan was Rs.706 crores. This is higher than the aggregrate internal resource generation of Rs.569 crores during the 24 years ending the Sixth Plan.

The Private Sector

9.15.6 The private sector has been able to regain some of its lost ground since 1986. A major contributory factor was the opening of a new financial institution, viz., Shipping Credit and Investment Company of India (SCICI) which was launched in 1987 in the place of the erstwhile Shipping Development Fund Committee (SDFC), for financing private sector ship acquisition. The SCICI did a commendable job in financially restructuring the entire private shipping industry as a result of which the private companies were able to reduce their debt liability and improve their viability.

9.15.7 Certain other steps were also taken during the later half of the 1980s to help this process. These were:

  1. Speeding up of acquisition procedure,
  2. Allowing acquisition of ships for cross trade,
  3. Permitting acquisition of ships upto 25 per cent in excess of assessed requirements,
  4. Allowing ship owners to place orders on Indian shipyards without reference to assessed requirements;
  5. Rehabilitation of sick shipping companies through several relief measures such as conversion of debt into zero rate/interest free bonds to the extent of the difference between the market value of the fleet and debt against the fleet,
  6. Allowing shipping companies to diversify into non-shipping activities and vice versa; and
  7. Relaxation ofpari-passu obligation.

9.15.8 The age profile of the shipping fleet shows a welcome trend towards younger ships. The over 20 years old has substantially declined, while the number vessels less than 5-9 years old has increased. However, the share of the middle aged vessels (10-19 years) too has increased from 48% in 1984-85 to 52% in 1989.

Indian Shipping Share in Trade

9.15.9 The traffic carried by Indian vessels is around 36% of the total Indian sea borne cargo. The share in POL is reasonably good, though it is not so in bulk carriers (26% as against target of 50%) and liner (21 % as against 40% target). A large cargo base is available in the country itself which can provide an impetus to Indian Shipping industry.

Seventh Plan and Annual Plans 1990-91 and 1991-92 Investment Programme

9.15.10 The outlay and expenditure during the Seventh Plan and the Annual Plans 1990-91 and 1991-92 are given in Table 9.9.  The scheme-wise break up of the outlay is given in Table 9.10.

Table - 9.9 Outlay and Expenditure and Pattern of Funding

  Outlay Expenditure

of which

Internal Resources Extra Budgetary Resources Budgetary Support
Seventh Plan (1985-90) 693.41 670.05* - - 670.05
Annual Plan (1990-91) 708.00 274.45 101.37 87.97 85.11
Annual Plan (1991-92) 611.00 966.46 153.72 780.49 32.25

*excludes internal resources and extra budgetary resources

Table - 9.10 Outlay and Expenditure- Shipping     


Seventh Plan



Outlay Expdr. Outlay Expdr. Outlay Expdr.
ShippingCorporation of India Interest subsidy for Sailing Vessels 670.47 7.20 662.27* 0.94 705.30 0.25 273.63 604.00 0.50 964.50 0.10
D.G. (Shipping) Total 15.74 693.41 6.84 670.05 2.45 708.00 0.82 274.45 6.50 611.00 1.86 966.46

* Outlay in case of SCI relates to budgetary support only.

Eighth Plan Objectives and thrust areas

9.16.1 The Eighth Plan has as its, main objective acquisition of a modern, diversified fleet capable of fulfilling the national objective of export promotion and improved balance of payments of the country. The other objectives are

  1. Scrapping of obsolete vessesis and acquisition of modern fuel efficient vessels;
  2. Streamlining and providing flexibility in the regulation and licensing procedure for ac-quistion, purchase and sale of ships and gradual movement towards total delicens-ing and deregulation;
  3. Cargo support to Indian Shipping by canalising all cargo of Government Departments/agencies to Indian vessels, as far as possible. A policy of purchase on FOB and sale on CIF terms to be strictly adhered to;
  4. Financial and managerial restructuring of shipping companies;
  5. A package of fiscal and monetary incentives linked to foreign exchange earnings of the sector;
  6. Revamping communication, data processing and control system;
  7. Development of manpower skills and training facilities; and
  8. Provision of adequate repair facilities.

Tonnage Acquisition Target

9.16.2 About 0.4 MGRT of the fleet will be overaged at the beginning of the Plan and over 1.5 MGRT will become overaged during the Plan. Thus, a total of 1.9 MGRT wilFneed replacement.

9.16.3 In the context of resources constraint, it is proposed to phase out the replacement requirement. About 1.5 MGRT will be replaced during the Plan period. Besides, about 1 MGRT will be added to the tonnage increasing the total tonnage at the end of the Eighth Plan to 7.0 MGRT.

Financial Strategies Envisaged

9.16.4 The traditional sources of funding for ship acquisition have been (a) long-term credit from ship builders, (h) loans in the international market, (c) backup rupee loans granted by -SDFC and Government on concessional basis.

9.16.5 In the context of resource constraint and the fact that shipping is highly capital-intensive industry, the new and innovative instruments such as Cross Border Leasing will have to be explored. Another method of financing could be sale and lease back of ships.

9.16.6 This mechanism would generate foreign exchange through sale of ships The ships sold would still be available through the mechanism of leasing back, though not under the Indian flag. Besides, the shipyard credit would continue to play an important role in the acquisition of new ships. Efforts would also be made to tap multilateral lending institutions like the World Bank, Asian Development Bank etc. for augmenting shipping tonnage.

9.16.7 In order to augment the private sector shipping tonnage, it would be necessary to strengthen the resource base of SCICI which is responsible for financial assistance to private shipping companies. For this purpose, the SCICI would be allowed to raise market borrowings to meet its commitments.

Assistance to Sailing Vessels

9.16.8 A new scheme called the "Sailing Vessels Subsidised Loan Scheme" was initiated in 1988 under which loans could be granted by the State Financial Corporation or nationalised banks for construction of mechanised vessels. The institutions will be subsidised by the Government of India for the lower interest charged by them from the ship owner. There has been no expenditure under this scheme since the time it was formulated. The scheme will be assessed and efforts made to smoothen out any constraints to effective implementation of the scheme.

Manpower Planning and Development

9.16.9 The major ongoing scheme refers to the setting up of the shore based Academy at Bombay. Other new schemes include acquisition of simulators and setting up of a Rating Training Establishment Centre. Induction of private investment will he actively explored in setting up the new institutes.

9.16.10 There is also need to retrain the existing officers so as to upgrade their skills and integrate various training disciplines. This is because technically advanced ships demand polyvalent officers capable of handling both navigational and engineering functions.

9.16.11 In the case of crew, the demand for ratings is on the increase due to upsurge in shipping industry. The training facilities will need to be adequately augmented to meet the increasing demand for ratings and also retraining of existing crew as general purpose crew.

Coastal Shipping

9.16.12 Coastal shipping is ideally suited to carry long distance bulk cargo and passenger traffic especially for destinations on the water front. The coastal tonnage increased from 99 vessels of 0.345 million GRT in 1984-85 to 159 vessels of 0.518 million GRT in 1989-90. The increase in tonnage has been due to the acquisition of off-shore vessels which cater mainly ta the requirements ofONGC.

9.16.13 Over the years, there has been a decline in the movement of general cargo and passengers by coastal vessels. This has been mainly due to presence ofoveraged coastal vessels, steep rise in cargo handling cost, competition from rail and road and the Indian Customs Act which equates coastal vessels with foreign going vessels as regards the procedural formalities. These constraints have to be removed.

9.16.14 It may be mentioned that coastal shipping can play an important role in selective stretches for transport of cargo and passengers. The possibilities of introducting roll on-roll off(Ro-Ro) and other fast moving passenger and ferry vessels need to be explored. Complementary investments in dredging and development of small ports will also be necessary, besides development of harbours.

9.16.15 In the Eighth Plan, coastal shipping will need to be adequately developed to cater to the increased coal movements from coal mines to thermal power stations.

Outlay lor Eighth Plan

9.16.16 The outlay for Eighth Plan for the Shipping in the Central Sector is Rs.3400 crores and Rs. 268.91 crores in the State Sector.


9.17.1 The outlay and expenditure on lighthouses are as follows : (Rs.crores)

  Outlay Expenditure
Seventh Plan 30.00 16.24
Annual Plan 1990-91 19.00 3.60
Annual Plan 1991-92 24.00 38.04
Eighth Plan 57.00 -

9.17.2 While the amount required for spillover schemes is Rs.22.55 crores, new schemes account for Rs.34.45 crores in the Eighth Plan.

9.17.3 The important spillover schemes include (a) replacement of Decca chains by Loran 'C' (Rs.2.84 crores),(h) and replacement of M.V. Sagardeep (Rs.17.32 crores). Among the new schemes the important ones are (a) construction and improvement of lighthouses; (h) construction of office building and (c) replacement of Salaya Decca chain.

Table- 9.11 Volume of Traffic at Major Ports
(Million tonnes)

Name of the port 1984-85 1989-90 1990-91 1991-92
Calcutta/Haldia 10.18 14.69 14.90 17.95
Bombay 25.20 27.46 29.28 28.32
Madras 15.00 23.94 24.51 23.35
Cochin 3.92 7.11 7.32 7.48
Vishakhapatnam 12.87 21.12 19.42 19.28
Kandia 15.75 18.93 19.68 20.30
Mormugao 14.51 14.16 14.90 14.64
Paradip 2.14 6.18 6.68 7.02
New Mangalore 3.38 7.66 8.03 8.51
Tuticorin 3.78 5.33 5.07 5.47
Nheva Sheva - 0.70 2.02 2.68
Total 106.73 147.28 152.55 155.00


Review of Past Performance

9.18.1 There are 11 major ports and 139 minor intermediate ports located along the 5560 kms. long coast line of India. The traffic handled at major ports was 147.28 million tonnes in 1989-90.' In 1990-91 and 1991-92, the traffic increased to 152.55 million tonnes and 155.00 million tonnes respectively. Port-wise traffic growth is given in the Table 9.11.

9.18.2 The composition of traffic has undergone significant changes as shown in the Table 9.12.

9.18.3 The POL traffic has registered significant growth, while foodgrains traffic has dwindled as a consequence of increasing self-reliance. A recent phenomenon is the growing trend of container traffic, and. coal traffic which is likely to increase substantiaUy in the Eighth Plan.

Table- 9.12 Commodity-wise traffic at Major Ports
(Million tonnes)

Commodity 1984-85 1989-90 1990-91 1991-92
POL 49.73 62.00 65.78 63.60
Iron Ore 26.00 33.20 31.86 33.06
Coal 4.50 17.70 19.80 21.60
Fertilizers (including raw materials) 6.00 6.66 7.72 9.46
Foodgrains 1.10 * * *
Containers 3.23 6.00 7.92 ) 27.28
General Cargo 16.17 21.72 19.47 )
Total 106.73 147.28 152.55 155.00

* Included in General Cargo.

Table - 9.13 Commodity - wise Capacity at Major Ports
(Million tonnes)

Commodity 1984-85 1989-90 1990-91 1991-92
1 2 3 4 5
POL 55.25 72.15 72.15 76.65
Iron Ore 41.50 41.50 41.50 42.50
Coal 6.25 6.50 6.50 6.50
Fertilizers 3.90 6.60 6.60 6.60
Containers 3.48 5.82 5.82 6.58
General Cargo Total 22.35 132.73 28.35 161.32 28.35 161.32 28.75

Capacity at Major Ports

9.18.4 The capacity at major ports increased from 132.73 million tonnes in 1984-85 to 161.32 million tonnes in 1989- 90, and 167.58 million tonnes in 1991-92. The commodity wise capacity are given in Table 9.13.


9.18.5 The port productivity, in terms of ship turn-round time and average ship berth day  output, registered an improvement over the Plan period. The average turn-round time of a ship declined from 11.9 days in 1984-85 to 8.9 days in 1989-90 and 8.1 days in 1990-91, while the average ship berth day output, increased from 2314 tonnes per day in 1984-85 to 3277 tonnes in 1989-90, and 3372 million tonnes in 1990-91.

9.18.6 However, labour and equipment productivity are still areas of concern. The output per gang shift is low despite the fact that the fact that the norms fixed in 1983 itself are at a low level. The manning scales evolved three decades ago have not changed, though modern cargo handling techniques have been introduced during this period. The ports continue to be afflicted by pockets of surplus labour. Therefore, there is an urgent need to revise the norms of output and the manning scales.

9.18.7 Equipment utilisation has been low for most categories of equipment. In the case of modernised handling system for iron ore, the actual performance is much lower than the rated capacity and in some ports lower than the norms. Low productivity is due mainly to operational constraints such as equipment breakdown, time spent on surveys and deballasting, power failures etc. Efforts need to be made to remove these constraints to improve productivity.

9.18.8 The present container handling rates are also low compared to international standards. For example, the number of Tonne Equivalent Units (TEUs) handled per crane hour ranges between 7 in Bombay to 15 in Madras compared to 26 in Colombo and 32 in Singapore. There is need to improve the container handling rates to make Indian ports internationally competitive.

Seventh Plan Outlay and Programme

9.19.1 The Seventh Plan provided an outlay of Rs. 1104.79 crores for the Ports Sector. The expenditure totalled Rs. 1341.53 crores, of which major ports accounted for Rs. 1273.39 crores. Out of the total expenditure of Rs. 1341.53 crores, Rs.701.00 crores or 52% came from the internal resources and inter-cor-porate loans of major ports. The budgetary support accounted for 48% of the expenditure,. A large part of the budgetary support was oft account of foreign aided projects (about Rs.360' crores) and hence, net budgetary support was only 21 % of the expenditure.

9.19.2 There has been a shortfall in expenditure during 1990-91 and 1991-92 - Rs.220.28 crores in 1990-91, and Rs.347.72 crores in 1991-92. The main reason for this is the delay in sanction/ implementation of a number of projects such as laying of submarine pipelines at Bombay, oil jetty at Haldia, coal handling facilities at Paradip and Ennore, the dredging of Jiggerkhali Flat in the Hoogly Estuary, slow expansion of infrastructural facilities at JNPT etc.

9.19.3 During the Seventh Plan, Jawahar Lal Nehru Port (JNPT) was completed and commissioned in May, 1989. The port has three container berths,two hulk berths and can handle 5.9 million tonnes of traffic. Other schemes completed during the Seventh Plan/ Annual Plan 1990-91 and 1991-92 include the sixth general cargo berth at Kandia, one oil jetty at Madras, one multi- purpose berth at Mormugao, a general cargo berth at Mangalore, a general cargo berth and a fertiliser berth at Paradeep, an oil berth and cruse oil discharging system at Oouter harbour, Visakhapatnam, apart from container handling facilities at a number of ports.

Eighth Plan-Traffic and Capacity

9.20.1 The Eighth Plan traffic projections and the capacity build up required to serve this traffic are set out in Table 9.14.

9.20.2 The port-wise capacity and traffic projection at the end of the Eighth Plan is presented in Table 9.15

9.20.3 The major increase in capacity will take place at Paradip, Madras, Cochin, New Mangalore, Kandia and JNPT mainly to handle POL, Coal and container traffic. The Eighth Plan visualises actual physical capacity addition of about 88.91 million tonnes (MT). The details of the capacity addition are given hcfow :

P.O.L. 29.5(i 'Improved throiiL'hput at Bon-^'v, New berths at tk'Sdia, Kandia and Man'.';!'ore.
Coal 35.5C 'Coai traffic tor coastal thern'!.:il plants will requii't-' port handling faciliii"s ;it loading portof ot Paradip and receiving ports of Madras, Cochin, Tuticorin, New Mangalore.

Table - 9.14 Commodity-wise Port capacities and Traffic Projections
(in million tonnes)

Commodity Capacity as on 31.3.92 Plan (1992-97) Projected Traffic for 8th 8th Plan by Ports Capacity addition during by user agency Capcity addition at ports as on 31.3.1997 Total capacity
POL 76.65 87.81 24.00 5.50 106.15
Iron Ore 42.50 36.00 - - 42.50
Fertilizers (including raw material) 6.60 15.67* - - 6.60
Coal 6.50 36.00* 30.50 5.00 42.00
Other break bulk 28.75 37.43 9.81 0.35 38.91
Container 6.58 15.73* '0.75 - 17.33
Total 167.58 228.64 75.06 10.85 25?.^

Table - 9.15 Port Capacity and Traffic
(In million tonnes)

Port As on. 31.3.1992 As on 31.3.1997
Traffic capacity Traffic Capacity
Calcutta/Halclia 17.95 18.85 22.73 27.35
Paradip 7.02 6.80 20.22 31.60
Vizag 19.28 18.80 26.38 21.75
Madras 23.35 25.92 34.70 34.92
Tuticorin 5.47 5.50 9.34 8.70
Cochin 7.48 9.76 13.61 15.36
New Mangalore 8.51 10.00 15.51 18.10
Mormugao 14.64 17.10 17.75 17.01
Bombay '78.32 27.25 29.52 30.25
Kandia 20,30 21.70 27.70 37.60
JNPT 2.68 5.90 11.18 10.85
Total 155.00 167.58 228.64 253.49


Container 10.75 Improved container handling facilites at Madras JNPT, Cochin, Bombay, Calcutta, Haldia, Kandia.
General Cargo 10.16

Additional general cargo capacity at Haldia, Kandia,

Tilfit^nrin Mnrmn^o

Eighth Plan Thrust areas

9.21.1 The following are the thrust areas:

  1. Modernisation of port facilities and use of up-dated technology so as to improve the efficiency of operations and reduce the handling cost;
  2. Intensive utilisation of existing infrastructure through operational and managerial measures so as to optimise installed capacity utilisation;
  3. Expansion of facilities to handle at least 50 per cent of general cargo in container form:
  4. Deepening of drafts at selected major ports to receive larger vessels;
  5. Improvement in productivity of labour and equipment to improve the efficiency of port operations;
  6. Improvement in financial viability of ports;
  7. Alternative sources of funding port develop-ment;and
  8. Encouragement of private sector participation in selected port activities.

Strategies Visualised

9.21.2 In the Eighth Plan, modernisation of ports and cargo handling facilities, especially to handle container traffic will continue to receive priority. The development of containerisation will also necessitate rationalisation of container handling charges and tariff structure in major ports.

9.21.3 The Plan will provide for establishment of container freight stations as well as new Inland Container Depots. The concept of Multi-Modal-Transport System will be encouraged. The inter modal linkages between various modes of transport will be strengthened in order to allow smooth flow of traffic to and from the ports.

9.21.4 Since many ports will continue to handle traditional break-bulk cargo along with container cargo, the concept of multi-purpose terminals will he adopted to combine modern handling techniques with conventional operations.

9.21.5 A major constraint in the effective utilisation of modern container terminals at Madras, Jawahar Lal Nehru and Cochin Ports is the cabotage law which restricts coastal traffic movement to Indian vessels only. This prevents large foreign container vessels especially of the fourth generation category from using these ports as a base for transhipment of containers. This has resulted not only in under- utilisation of infrastructure at these ports but also in th^ diversion of traffic to nearby ports of Singapore* and Colombo, depriving the country of foreign exchange earned through container handling. At present the Indian shipping fleet has hardly any container or cellular vessels, leave alone fourth generation vessels. In view of this, it would he desirable to suitably amend the cabotage Saw to allow foreign lines to operate on selected •^retches of coastal waters so as to allow optimal utilisation of container facilities set up at our ports.

9.21.6 The existing levels of output in terms of cargo transferred or handled are relatively low and port productivity is a matter of concern. In the Eighth Plan, efforts will he made to improve She availability and utilisation of equipment to achieve higher productivity levels. Labour productivity at ports, too, is very low. There is need to optimise this through extensive manpower training to enhance skills and managerial capabilities. Manning scales need to lie reviewed and new techniques for cargo handling operations adopted.

9.21.7 Due to acute budgetary constraint, alternative sources of funding wil! need to be explored. One such concept is user investment. Construction and maintenance of such facilities by users is likely to result in more thorough utilisation and higher throughput. Another area of funding is inter-corporate loans introduced during the Seventh Plan This should be continued.

9.21.8 The private sector investment will also he encouraged in select port activities ranging from leasing of equipment to private management of terminals. In India, a beginning has ilready been made for the involvement of private sector in ports. For example, private -.cctor in many ports employ their own equipment for their cargo handling operations. Stevedoring is another private sector operation in many ports.

9.21.9 The dredging capacity would he increased by replacing the overaged dredgers with modern and larger capacity dredgers to meet the increasing dredging demand. Apart from port and harbour dredging, there is considerable demand for different categories of dredging activities as riverine dredging, dredging of inland canals, irrigation channels and reservoirs. In view of this potential, it is desirable that the Dredging Corporation of India (DCI) acquire small portable dredgers .-.uitahle for such activities.

9.21.10 There is need to conduct hydrographic surveys and to prepare modern charts to improve port development activities and open unexplored areas to deep draft sh;ps.

9.21.11 There is near absence of effective research and development units in ports. Planning and research cells will he set up in all the ports to improve the quality of planning techniques and expedite plan formulation.

9.21.12 There are at present two major institutions for training of personnel at the mannagement levels. These are National institute.of  Port Management (N1PM) and Indian Institute of Port Management(IIPM). Apart from this. there are Labour Training Institutes in several ports like Bombay, Madras, Calcutta and Vizag to train various categories of staff. The facilities at these institutes need to be upgraded to cater to the requirements of neighbouring ports.

Andaman and Lakshadweep Harbour works

9.21.13 In the Eighth Plan. the main schemes relate to the construction of breakwaters at a number of places, construction of Haddo Wharf and procurement of dredging equipment.

Intermediate and Minor Ports

9.21.14 At present, there are i39 minor or intermediate ports. The primary responsibility for their development and management rests with concerned State Governments.

9.21.15 The total traffic handled at minor ports has not registered significant increase over the years. Minor ports face various technical difficulties and shortcomings such as slow response to technological change in shipping and cargo handling, fall in iron-ore export and reduction in fertilizer traffic. Hence, the total traffic handled by these ports is growing at a much lower rate than that of the major ports.

9.21.16 Therefore, there is an urgent need for the concerned States to provide adequate funds for the development of minor ports so that they can meet the requirements of the hinterland Snd effectively cater to coastal and sailing vessels, thereby, reducing the pressure on major ports to some extent.

9.21.17 During the Seventh Plan, an outlay of Rs.20 crores was provided in the Central Sector to render financial assistance to the States to develop selected minor ports. However, no expenditure was incurred on account of lack of formulation of schemes in time.

Dredging Corporation of India(DCI)

9.21.18 At present the Dredging Corporation of India has a fleet of 7 dredgers, out of which 2 are cutter suction dredgers and 5 are trailer suction dredgers. The capacity of DCI at the end of the Seventh Plan was 224.74 lakh cu.m. In the Eighth Plan, it is anticipated that capital dredging requirements will be about 1314 lakh cu.m. and maintenance dredging 685.70 lakh cu.m.

9.21.19 During the Eighth Plan, it is proposed to decommission four dredgers of DC! and five dredgers of Ports and replace them with larger and more efficient dredgers.

Eighth Plan Investment Programme

9.21.20 The expenditure in the Ports Sector during the Seventh Plan and Annual Plans 1990-91 and 1991-92 is given in Annexure 9.7.

9.21.21 An outlay of Rs.3216 crores is included in the Eighth Plan for Port Sector in the Central Plan. The outlay provided in the State Plans for ports and lighthouses in Rs. 319.28 crores

Inland Water Transport


9.22.1 Inland Water Transport (IWT) forms a very small part of the total transport network of the country. Out of a total freight traffic of about 550 million tonnes by all modes of surface transport, IWT carries about 16.6 million tonnes. In terms oftonne kilometres, the share of IWT is less than 1 percent. This IWT traffic is mainly on account of movement of Iron Ore on Goa waterways, which forms about 96% of the total IWT traffic. Other waterways account for only about 1.5to 2.0 million tonnes of traffic.

9.22.2 The main reason tor the small share of IWT traffic is its spatial limitation. Compared to the countrywide network of rail and road transport, waterways are restricted to only certain areas like Ganga in the Eastern region, Brahmaputra in the North Eastern region, Goa waterways and canals and backwaters ofKerala, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra. Total navigable waterways comprising of a variety of rivers, canals, backwaters etc., extend to 14,500 Kms., of which only about 5,200 Kms of major rivers and 485 Kms of canals are suitable for operation of mechanised crafts.

9.22.3 Secondly, even where waterways are available, the potential has not been fully exploited on account of various constraints. Most of the waterways suffer from navigational hazards like shallow water and narrow width during dry weather, siltation and bank erosion and inadequate vertical and horizontal clearances resulting in considerable detention en-route. Navigational aids are inadequate and infrastructural facilities like terminals unsatisfactory. The crafts used for mechanical operations are overaged. 9.22.4 Thirdly, IWT traffic suffers from overall cost disadvantage compared to rail and road transport. It is suitable for low value, high volume, non perishable bulk cargo. It is cost effective only where origin and destination are located on river banks, as in the case of Iron-ore movement in Goa waterways. It loses much of its cost effectiveness in case of transhipment involving multi-modal transport on account of additional cost of cargo handling involved.


9.23.1 Development of IWT has received low priority till the advent of the Sixth Plan which marked a watershed in the sense that some important policy decisions were taken and major schemes of national importance were started. A policy to declare important waterways as National Waterways was initiated and Ganga-Bhagirathi-Hooghly stretch between Allahabad and Haldia was declared National Waterway. An Interest Subsidy Scheme was started to provide loans to the IWT entrepreneurs at a subsidised rate of interest for acquisition of mechanised craft. Against a total expenditure of Rs.28.20 Crores till the Fifth Plan and two Annual Plans 1978-79 and 1979-80, actual expenditure for the Sixth Plan amounted t6 Rs.39.05 Crores.

Table 9.16 Outlay and Expenditure - Inland Water Transport
(Rs. Crores)

Sl.No. Programme Seventh Plan


  Outlay Expenditure Outlay bxpenditure Outlay
l.CIWTC Scheme 97.47 92.76 93.25 8.25 35.00
2.Central/IWAI Schemes 43.20 36.14 18.00 5.60 12.30
3.R and D Schemes 1.00 0.02 0.60 - 0.18
4.Centrally Spionsored Schemes 13.33 2.93 3.15 0.58 2.52
TOTAL 155.00 131.85 57.00 14,43 50.00

9.23.2 Inland Water Transport was given a high priority during the Seventh Plan. The Table 9.16 gives the outlay and expenditure during the seventh plan; and the annual plans 1990-91 and 1991-92 for the central sector. Stress in the Plans was laid on development of waterway and modernisation of vessels. Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI) was set up to coordinate and implement various central schemes for development of waterways. Brahmaputra between Sadiya and Dhubri was declared National Waterway. Development work on Ganga-Bhagirathi-Hooghly National Waterway continued. The waterway is being developed in three stretches viz., Allahabad-Patna, Patna-Farakka and Farakka-Haldia. Floating terminals were set up at various places between Patna and Haldia. Navigational facilities are being strengthened on the waterways. For development of Brahmaputra, a Master Plan has been prepared and preliminary works for channel development are being undertaken. A number of hydrographic surveys and techno-economic studies have been undertaken on a number of other waterways.

9.23.3 A programme was undertaken to replace overaged fleet of Central Inland Water Transport Corporation (CIWTC). Forty two new vessels were acquired under Sixth Plan Scheme and 63 new vessels will Join the fleet as part of Seventh Plan Scheme by 1992-93.

Eighth Plan Thrust and Strategy:

9.24.1 Keeping in view the constraints facing IWT and recognising its potential for growth, the thrust will be on:

  1. Development of IWT in the regions where it enjoys natural advantages;
  2. Improvement in productivity of assets, through modernisation and upgradation of technology; and
  3. Building up of trained and skilled manpower for IWT operation.

9.24.2 The measures to achieve these objectives will be:

i) Two national waterways, Ganga and Brahamputra have to be fully developed. Essential works include dredging and conservancy works to attain and maintain adequate depth and width of the channels, providing adequate navigational aids to enable navigation throughout the year and 24 hour navigation on selected stretches and setting up intergrated terminals. Other important waterways would be developed on the stretches where traffic already exists;

ii) Modernisation of IWT vessels and replacement of overaged ones. Development of specific vessels to meet the requirement of different types of cargo and suit different waterways including those with shallow draft;

iii) In CIWTC, attempt will be made to fully utilise the capacity generated so far before considering new proposals for, acquisition of further vessels. *

iv) Private entrepreneurs will continue to he given interest subsidy for acquisition of better designed vessels and improved country crafts. A scheme is proposed to he launched to provide financial assistance to entrepreneurs. Private participation would also -be encouraged in setting up of terminals.

Programme Visualised :

9.24.3 On Ganga-Bhagirathi-Hooghly stretch, the existing floating terminals between Patna and Haldia will be replaced and more terminals provided at important points; navigational aids would be strengthened and conservancy works continued on the waterway. On the Brahmaputra, development of terminals and navigational aids would he undertaken according to the master plan. An outlay of Rs. 240 crores has been approved for the Eighth Plan in the Central sector, and Rs 107.63 crores in the State sector.

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