Travel – Delhi – III – Its economy, utility services and transport


A view of a road at Connaught Place showing busy traffic

Connaught Place in Delhi is an important economic hub of the National Capital Region

Delhi is the largest commercial centre in northern India; it has an estimated netState Domestic Product (FY 2010) of1595 billion (US$25 billion) in nominal terms and ~6800 billion(US$110 billion) in PPP terms.[100] As of 2013, the per capita income of Delhi was Rs. 230000, highest in India. GSDP in Delhi at the current prices for 2012-13 is estimated at Rs 3.88 trillion (short scale) against Rs 3.11 trillion (short scale) in 2011-12.[101]

As per the Economic survey of Delhi (2005–2006), the tertiary sectorcontributes 70.95% of Delhi’s gross SDP followed by secondary and primarysectors, with 25.20% and 3.85% contributions respectively.[102] Delhi’s workforce constitutes 32.82% of the population, and increased by 52.52% between 1991 and 2001.[103] Delhi’s unemployment rate decreased from 12.57% in 1999–2000 to 4.63% in 2003.[103] In December 2004, 636,000 people were registered with various employment exchange programs in Delhi.[103] In 2001 the total workforce in national and state governments and the quasi-government sector was 620,000, and the private sector employed 219,000.[103] Key service industries are information technology, telecommunications, hotels, banking, media and tourism.[104] Construction, power, health and community services, and real estate are also important to the city’s economy. Delhi has one of India’s largest and fastest growing retail industries.[105] Manufacturing also grew considerably as consumer goods companies established manufacturing units and headquarters in the city. Delhi’s large consumer market and the availability of skilled labour has attracted foreign investment. In 2001, the manufacturing sector employed 1,440,000 workers and the city had 129,000 industrial units.[106]

Utility services

See the caption for details

The headquarters of the New Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC).

Delhi’s municipal water supply is managed by the Delhi Jal Board (DJB). As of 2005–06, it supplied 650 million gallons per day (MGD), whereas the estimated consumption requirement is 963 MGD.[107] The shortfall is met by private and public tube wells and hand pumps. At 240 MGD, the Bhakra storage is DJB’s largest water source, followed by the Yamuna and Ganges rivers. Delhi’s groundwater level is falling and its population density is increasing, so residents often encounter acute water shortage.[107]
In Delhi, daily domestic solid waste production is 8000 tonnes which is dumped at three landfill locations by MCD.[108] The daily domestic waste water production is 470 MGD and industrial waste water is 70 MGD.[109] A large portion of the sewage flows untreated into the Yamuna river.[109]

The city’s electricity consumption is about 1,265 kWh per capita, but actual demand is higher.[110] In Delhi power distribution is managed by Tata Power Distribution and BSES Rajdhani since 2002. The Delhi Fire Service runs 43 fire stations that attend about 15,000 fire and rescue calls per year.[111] The state-owned Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Limited (MTNL) and private enterprisesVodafoneAirtelIdea cellularReliance InfocommAircel and Tata Docomoprovide telephone and cell phone service to the city. Cellular coverage is available in GSMCDMA3G and 4G.


Main article: Transport in Delhi
Shown here is the check-in counter at Terminal 2 of the airport.
Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi, it is the busiest airport in South Asia.[112] Shown here is the check-in counter at Terminal 3 of the airport.
A green coloured Delhi Transport Corporation CNG bus in the middle of the road
The Delhi Transport Corporationoperates the world’s largest fleet of compressed natural gasbuses, totalling 9,000.[76][113]
The entrance of the Anand Vihar station
Anand Vihar Terminal railway station, opened in 2009
The Delhi-Gurgaon Expressway
The Delhi-Gurgaon Expressway, connecting Delhi to the Indira Gandhi International Airport
A Delhi underground metro station
A Delhi underground metro station


Indira Gandhi International Airport, situated to the southwest of Delhi, is the main gateway for the city’s domestic and international civilian air traffic. In 2012-13, the airport was used by more than 35 million passengers,[114][115]making it one of the busiest airports in South Asia. Terminal 3, which cost96.8 billion (US$1.5 billion) to construct between 2007 and 2010, handles an additional 37 million passengers annually.[116]

The Delhi Flying Club, established in 1928 with two de Havilland Moth aircraft named Delhi and Roshanara, was based at Safdarjung Airport which started operations in 1929, when it was the Delhi’s only airport and the second in India.[117] The airport functioned until 2001, however in January 2002 the government closed the airport for flying activities because of security concerns following the New York attacks in September 2001. Since then, the club only carries out aircraft maintenance courses,[117] and is used for helicopter rides to Indira Gandhi International Airport for VIP including the president and the prime minister.[118]

A second airport open for commercial flights has been suggested, by expansion of Meerut Airport or construction of a new airport in Greater Noida.[119]


Delhi has the highest road density of 2103 km/100 sq. km in India.

Buses are the most popular means of road transport catering to about 60% of Delhi’s total demand. Delhi has one of India’s largest bus transport systems. Buses are operated by the state-ownedDelhi Transport Corporation (DTC), which owns largest fleet of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG)-fueled buses in the world. Personal vehicles especially cars also form a major chunk of vehicles plying on Delhi roads. Delhi has the highest number of registered cars compared to any other metropolitan city in India. Taxis, Auto Rickshaws and Cycle Rickshaws also ply on Delhi roads in large numbers.

Important Roads in Delhi

Some roads and expressways serve as important pillars of Delhi’s road infrastructure:

  • Inner Ring Road is one of the most important “state highways” in Delhi. It is a 51 km long circular road, which connects important areas in Delhi. Owing to more than 2 dozen grade-separators/flyovers, the road is almost signal-free.
  • Outer Ring Road is another major artery in Delhi that links far-flung areas of Delhi.
  • The Delhi Noida Direct Flyway (DND Flyway) is an eight-laned access controlled tolled expressway which connects Delhi to Noida (an important satellite city of Uttar Pradesh). The acronym DND stands for “Delhi-Noida Direct”.
  • ‘The Delhi Gurgaon Expressway is a 28 km (17 mi) expressway connecting Delhi to Gurgaon, an important satellite city of Haryana.
  • The Delhi Faridabad Skyway is controlled tolled expressway which connects Delhi to Faridabad, an important satellite city of Haryana.

National Highways Passing Through Delhi

Delhi is connected by Road to various parts of the country through several National highways:


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