Q. 1. Why is the distribution of roads not uniform in India? Explain with examples.
Ans. Road distribution is not uniform in India due to:
(i) Nature of terrain
(ii) Level of forest area
(iii) Economic development
(iv) Lack of resources
(v) Government policies
(vi) Rainy areas
(vii) Industrial areas
(viii) Centre of trade and commerce.
(i) Nature of Terrain: The distribution of roads is not uniform in the country. Density of roads varies from only 12.14 km Jammu and Kashmir to 517.77 km in Kerala with a national average of 142.68 km. The density of roads is high in most of the northern states and major southern states. It is low in the Himalayan region, north-eastern region, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan. Construction of roads is easy and cheaper in the plain areas while it is difficult and costly in hilly and plateau areas.
(ii) Density of population: Density of population affects the demands of roads. Urban settlements having high population usually have high density of road network while remote rural areas usually lack such facilities, e.g, Kolkata.
(iii) The levels of economic development: Developed areas have high demand of roads and also have money for construction and maintenance, e.g., Gujarat.
(iv) Industrial areas: Important industrial regions have high density of road networks while remote rural areas usually lack such facilities, e.g., Kolkata.
(v) Centre of trade and commerce: Commercial towns have high density of road networks to facilitate connectivity to markets, ports and collection centres, e.g., Mumbai.
Q. 2. Which is the apex body in India to improve the quality of National Highways? Examine the significance of National Highways.
Ans. The apex body in India to improve the quality of National Highways is National Highways Authority of India (NHAI).
Significance of National Highways:
(i) National Highways pass across the country connecting major state capitals, major cities, important ports and railway junctions.
(ii) National Highways are meant for inter-state transport and for the movement of defence men and materials in strategic areas.
(iii) The National Highways constitute approximately 2% of total road length and carries 40% of the total road traffic.
(iv) They are 4-6 lanes and makes the journey fast and easy.
Q. 3. Explain why rail transport continues to remain the chief mode of transport for the masses in India.
Ans. Railway transport occupies a significant role in the transport system of a country because the development of trade, industry and commerce of a country largely depends on the development of railways.
(i) It facilitates long distance travel and transport of bulky goods which are not easily transported through motor vehicles.
(ii) It is a quick and more regular form of transport because it helps in the transportation of goods with speed and certainty.
(iii) It helps in industrialisation process of a country by easy transportation of coal and raw materials at a cheaper rate.
(iv) It helps in quick movement of goods from one place to another at the time of emergencies like famines and scarcity.
(v) It encourages mobility of labour and thereby provides a great scope for employment.
Q. 4. “Land transport plays a vital role in the development of trade and tourism in the world.” Support the statement with suitable examples.
Ans. (i) Transport helps in the assembly of raw materials and distribution of finished goods. It makes possible to move goods from the place of production to the place where they are to be consumed.
(ii) In the earlier days, there were only local markets due to the absence of safe means of transport. Nowadays, trade is not restricted to boundaries of a nation, but has spread throughout the world.
(iii) Development of the efficient means of transport has knit together all the nations of the world into one big world market. Even the perishable articles like fish, dairy products, meat, etc., are being transported to distant places of the world. But without good transport facilities such a development in trade and commerce would not be possible. In India, there are many highways linking the major towns and cities. For example, National Highway No. 7 (NH 7), connecting Varanasi with Kanyakumari, is the longest in the country. The Golden Quadrilateral (GQ) or Super Expressways connects the four metropolitan cities-New Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai, Kolkata and Hyderabad which has helped in the development of the trade.
(iv) Transportation links diverse destinations and ferries people, commodities and services between these places. Tourism is much about travel and therefore the role of transportation in its operation is vital. Railways are also a mode of land transport that helps to carry passengers over long distances.
(v) The Border Road Organisation has constructed roads in high altitude mountainous terrains joining Chandigarh with Manali (Himachal Pradesh) and Leh (Ladakh). This road runs at an average altitude of 4,270 metres above the mean sea level and has promoted tourism in such highaltitude areas as well.
Q. 5. Describe the journey of development of land transport from the days of humans as carriers and the cable ways of todays.
Ans. Land transport is an important part of India’s economy as most of the movement of goods takes place over land. In the early days, human beings themselves carry palki or doli on certain occasions such as marriages and ceremonies. Later animals were used to carry load and treated as beasts of burden. Invention of the wheel revolutionised the means of transport carts and wagons, railways steam engine, invention of combustion enginemotors, cars and trucks, pipelines, ropeways and cableways have made the life of human easy.
Q. 6. What are National Highways? Explain any four uses of National Highways in India.
Ans. The National Highways are a network of highways that is managed and maintained by agencies of the Government of India. These highways are measured over 70,934 km as of 2010, including over 1000 km of limited access Expressways.
Uses of National Highways:
(i) It works as mega source of transportation. National Highways constituted about 2% of all the roads in India, but carried about 40% of the total traffic of 2010.
(ii) National Highways form the economical backbone of the country and have often facilitated development along their routes, and many new towns have sprung up along major highways.
(iii) It connects almost all mega cities. Basically these are meant for inter-state transport
(iv) It is connected to or passes nearby industries so that their products can reach out to market easily.
Q. 7. Explain with five suitable examples, how ‘the level of economic development’ and ‘nature of terrain’ affect the density of roads in India.
Ans. (i) The roads in our villages, towns and cities are bumpy and are not traffic worthy. In villages streets or roads are uneven and if it is dark one may stumble. The Panchayats, municipalities and corporations are not particular in laying good roads, in mending them.
(ii) Even in the cities the roads are not well metalled and there is no footpath . Except in the main thoroughfares there are no footpaths.
(iii) Jammu & Kashmir has only 10.48 km road density.
(iv) It is very low in the Himalayan region and Northeast region.
(v) It is also low in plateau areas in India.
Q. 8. Explain the merits and demerits of road transport in India.
Ans. Merits: (i) Road transportation provides convenient service to people. Goods can be conveniently transported from sender to the receiver.
(ii) Road transport or automobiles like trucks, motors, etc., are the best means for transporting perishable goods. They can carry such goods to the destination within short time at lower cost.
(iii) Road transport is more flexible than other means of transport. If any road is blocked, the road automobiles like truck, bus can be taken through alternative ways. They do not need fixed road like railway line.
(iv) It offers door-to-door service.
(i) The means of road transport like bus, trucks, etc. are not suitable in travelling or transporting goods to long distance.
(ii) The service of road automobiles such as bus, trucks, etc. are not reliable. They have neither certain route nor fixed time.
(iii) Road transport is risky. Sudden accident may happen. Necessary security arrangement cannot be made against such accident.
(iv) During rainy season, unmetalled roads become unmotorable.
(v) Even metalled roads are seriously handicapped during heavy rains and floods. Cities suffer from chronic traffic congestions.
Q. 9. How are Indian railways contributing to the growth of national economy? Explain with examples.
Give a detailed account of the development of railways in India and highlight their importance.
Ans. The Indian railways contributes to India’s economic development, accounting for about one per cent of the GNP and the backbone of freight needs of the core sector. It accounts for six per cent of the total employment in the organised sector directly and an additional 2.5 per cent indirectly through its dependent organisations. It has invested significantly in health, education, housing and sanitation.
With its vast network of schools and investment in training, the Indian Railways plays an important role in human resource development. The Indian Railways, with nearly 63,000 route kilometres fulfils the country’s transport needs, particularly, in respect of long-distance passenger and goods traffic. Freight trains carry nearly 1.2 million tonnes of originating goods and 7,500 passenger trains carry nearly 12 million passengers every day.
The railways has developed indigenous capacity for rolling stock manufacture, including state-of -the-art electric and diesel locomotives and high speed passenger coaches. It has introduced highspeed Rajdhani and Shatabdi Express trains and mass rapid transit systems in the metropolitan areas.
Railways connect areas around towns, raw material producing areas and of plantations and other commercial crops.
Hill stations and cantonment towns are well- connected by railways.
Q. 10. Define the term ‘Road Density.’ Explain with examples the two main determinants of road density in India.
Ans. Road density: Length of roads per 100 sq km of area.
Determinants of road density are (a) level of economic development and (b) nature of terrain.
(i) Construction of roads is easy and cheaper in plain areas.
(ii) It is difficult and costly in hilly and plateau areas.
(iii) Jammu and Kashmir has only 12.14 km road density while Kerala has 517.77 km.
(iv) The road density is high in most of northern states and major southern states.
(v) It is low in the Himalayan region, north-eastern region, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan.
(vi) Not only the density but also the quality of roads is relatively better in plains as compared to roads in high altitude areas, rainy and forested regions.
Q. 11. Explain the merits and demerits of pipeline in India.
Ans. The merits of pipeline:
(i) Pipelines provide uninterrupted flow of water, gas and petroleum.
(ii) Initial cost of laying pipelines is high but, the running cost is minimal.
(iii) They are eco-friendly, energy efficient, do not contribute to the pollution and save fuel.
(iv) It rules out trans-shipment losses or delays.
(v) These can be laid in difficult terrains, underwater and dense-forested areas.
(vi) Uninterrupted supply.
The demerits of pipeline:
(i) Leakage in the pipelines is difficult to detect.
(ii) Safeguarding the pipeline from the extremists is very difficult.
(iii) These are not flexible and cannot give door to door services.
(iv) Once laid, capacity cannot be increased.