During 2012-13, there has been a general economic slowdown, and this, along with other external factors, adversely affected the performance of Highway projects in India. Out of total targeted award of 8,100km, NHAI could award only 1,116km of NHDP projects. However the performance on the construction front was much better ? against a target of 3000km, 2702km was achieved. In the year 2011-12, the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways was able to award only 1,933km of projects as against the target of 9,500km. The Ministry has made sustained efforts to identify the issues ? delay in land acquisition, environment and forest clearances, shortage of equity, management of contracts etc ? that affected the performance of the highways sector and worked out some solutions. The following article by Vijay Chhibber, Secretary, Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, gives an overview of the Indian Highways and the measures taken by the Ministry to speed up the road building activity.