Transport and Communication
If the amount of export and import roughly equals or export is more than import, the country is supposed to have a balanced trade or favourable trade. In a way, it indicates towards the good condition of a country’s economy. The use of transport and communication depends upon our need to move things from place of their availability to the place of their use. Human-beings use various methods to move goods, commodities, ideas from one place to another.
Total length of roads in India includes both metalled (surface) and unmetalled (unsurfaced) roads. National highways account for less than 2% of the total road network. But they carry about 40% of the movement of goods and passengers. They are constructed and maintained by the central government. Some of the important roads developed and maintained by the state governments within a state are called state highways.
The first train steamed off from Mumbai to Thane, a distance of 34 km in 1853. Indian railways are divided into three categories according to the width of the railway Gauge - broad gauge (1.69m), meter gauge (1m), and narrow gauge (0.77m). The narrow gauge is confined to hilly areas only. The longest distance of 3, 574 km is covered by the train, which connects Guwahati in the north-east and Thiruvananthapuram in the south-west. The major important trunk routes having a major traffic flow is between the metro cities of Calcutta, Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai.
India has a long coastline. About 90% of the sea borne trade is handled through 11 major ports. They are Kandla, Mumbai, Nhava Sheva, Marmagao and Cochin on the western coast and Tuticorin, Chennai, Visakhapatnam, Paradwip, Haldia and Calcutta on the eastern coast of India. The Ganga and Brahmaputra are the two navigable rivers of India. The lower course of Godavari and the Krishna are also navigable. The Buckingham canal in Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh and West coast canal of Kerala are navigable.
The Indian postal network is the largest network in the world. Every village is to be provided with one public telephone. About 1/3rd of the total villages have now this facility. Electronic mail and internet services provide cheaper and quicker communication. It has been possible because of the satellites launched by India for improving communication facilities.