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National Highways in India

The national highways network of India is a network of highways that is

managed and maintained by agencies of the Government of India.

These highways measured over 100,087 km (62,191 mi) as of June 2016,

including over 1,000 km (620 mi) of limitedaccess expressways (motorways).

The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) is the nodal agency

responsible for building, upgrading and maintaining most of the national
highways network. It operates under the Ministry of Road Transport and

The National Highways Development Project (NHDP) is a major effort to

expand and upgrade the network of highways.

On 28 April 2010, the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways officially

published a new numbering system for the national highway network in the
Gazette of the Government of India. It is a systematic numbering scheme
based on the orientation and the geographic location of the highway. This
was adopted to ensure more flexibility and consistency in the numbering of
existing and new national highways.

As per the new numbering system:

All north-south oriented highways will have even numbers increasing from
the east to the west
All east-west oriented highways will have odd numbers increasing from the
north to the south
All major Highways will be single digit or double digit in number
Three digit numbered highways are secondary routes or branches of a main
highway. The secondary route number is prefixed to the number of the main
highway. For example, 144, 244, 344 etc will be the branches of the main
Suffixes A, B, C, D etc are added to the three digit sub highways to indicate
very small spinoffs or stretches of sub-highways like 144A, 244A, etc.

Some Interesting Facts on National Highways:
The national highways consume only 1.7% of all Indian roads. Yet they
control 40% of road traffic in the country.
The smallest national highway is NH47A (Now known as NH 966B)
with a mere length of 6 kms. It runs from Ernakulam to Kochi Port.
The NH7 (Now known as National Highway 44 (NH 44)) is the longest
national highway in India with a length of 2369 kms, running from
Varanasi to Kanyakumari.
As a part of the National Highways Development Project, the North-
South-East-West corridor (NS-EW) is being constructed, which is a
whopping 7300 kms long. As of 31 March 2015 , 6375 of 7300
kilometers project has been completed . The NS corridor stretches from
Srinagar in J&K; all the way to Kanyakumari, the southern most tip of
India while the EW corridor connects Porbandar in Gujarat with Silchar
in Assam. This comes under phase 2 of the NHDP project under
Furthermore, under the same project, the Golden Quadrilateral(GQ)
stretch which connects the four metro cities of India (Delhi, Mumbai,
Kolkata and Chennai) is also under construction, and is as long as 5846
Milestones play a significant role too. They help distinguish a national
highway from a city highway or a state highway based on these
specifications: The paintings specified on kilometer stone are:
National: Yellow and white.
State: Green and white.
City: Black and white.