Large scale infrastructure projects in India, primarily in the road and power sector, receive a sizable investment (~10%) of the gross fixed capital formation in India. These investments have been made by both the Central Government (CG) or the State Government (SG) and the private sector. The proportion of private sector investment has been increasing over the years. An analysis of 897 projects, implemented between March 1994 and September 2007 and having project costs over Rs 200 million ($ US 4 billion), revealed that 31% of the projects faced cost overruns, while 35% of the projects faced time overruns. 10% of the projects faced both cost and time overruns.
Various committees have identified environmental and land acquisition issues as the two largest sources of delay in megaprojects. This article endeavours to throw light on the evolution of law and discuss practical experiences with respect to acquisition of land and obtaining environmental approvals for large scale projects in India.