Rajpath Infracon Transforming Impossbile to Possible

Jagdish Kadam, Chairman & Managing Director, Rajpath Infracon
Having achieved two world records in road construction, Jagdish Kadam, Chairman & Managing Director, Rajpath Infracon, expresses his desire to draw the world’s attention to India’s infra development capabilities and thereby open up opportunities globally for the growth of this sector.

Congratulations on achieving the world record in highway construction! What was the motive behind taking up such a challenging task?
Accepting challenges and transforming the impossible to possible is not a new thing at Rajpath Infracon. Back in May 2021 we had achieved a world record by laying 39.691 kms of bituminous concrete in just 24 hours when the Covid pandemic was at its peak. It had left the industry wondering how we achieved this feat. Our confidence is stronger than ever before, and we are hungering to do something remarkable again.

We are motivated by a desire to create and establish a sense of conviction and confidence in the infrastructure development industry of India. We want to attract the world’s attention and players in the field to the extraordinary capabilities of infrastructural development companies in India and thereby open up opportunities globally for the growth of this sector. And finally, the most important motive was to firmly express unfaltering support and commitment towards nation building schemes like the Gati Shakti, Bharat Mala Pariyojana, and other such visionary programs being implemented by our Hon. PM Shri Narendra Modi and the Hon. Minister of MoRTH, Shri Nitin Gadkari.

No doubt, the challenge was intimidating, but our resolve was unyielding. We knew what we had set out to achieve the 75+ km mark in 105 hours, as planned. Last month, our Hon. PM had called upon the citizens of India to dedicate 75 hours to the progress of the nation on the occasion of Azadi Ka Amrit Mohotsav. We decided to give our work a dash of the extraordinary by paving 75 km of bituminous concrete continuously, making a new Guinness World Record, and offering this to our nation in response to our PM’s clarion call, to commemorate the 75 grand years of Indian independence.

Rajpath Infracon Transforming Impossbile to PossibleJagdish Kadam, Chairman and Managing Director at Rajpath Infracon was felicitated by Madam Alka Upadhyay, NHAI Chairperson, in Delhi for achieving and making a new Guinness World Record for NHAI and India.

What was the strategy and planning behind the work?
Rome too was not built in a day! Everything about this task was a learning for us - passing the eligibility test, completion of documentation, and constant communi- cation with the Guinness Record Team in the UK. Our strategy was clear - make it right the first time! We had set our eyes on the target to achieve 75+ km of continuous paving, to achieve which, we connected with our reliable partners in machinery and materials and shared our plans with them without any ambiguity. Not only did we win their wholehearted support but also their zeal, and we built a formidable team that would be fail-proof.

At our end, we established a core team of think tanks followed by various other teams like Technical, Operations, Purchase, Finance, IT, and Admin – all of which fed inputs to the core team. We were fairly sorted when it came to processes because of our ISO systems. The planning and brainstorming went on for 5 long intense months. The micro-management was also meticulously premeditated; it included arrangements for a round-the-clock ISO-certified canteen, fire-fighting systems, a dedicated ambulance with doctor’s services and we ensured that nothing went amiss when D-day arrived. We are happy to declare that all our hard work did give our teams full returns.

Rajpath Infracon Transforming Impossbile to Possible

What construction equipment and technologies did you deploy for the project?
Rajpath Infracon has always focused on innovative solutions with the help of modern technology. We have never compromised on this because we believe in smart work and delivering the highest possible quality of work.

All the equipment machinery that we employed in this project was of the latest models with updated technology for performance and monitoring. They were sourced from the world’s best manufacturers like Wirtgen, Tata Motors, Cummins, Ammann Apollo, and a few material suppliers like IOC, BPCL etc. We had their expert team on the field throughout the 5 days to provide every kind of assistance and support to ensure optimal output. Contingency planning was done at an advanced level.

The stats of the entire project were incredibly astounding! 36,634 metric tons of bituminous concrete was paved in 105 hours and 33 minutes with the help of 728 workers. 80 Tippers, 5 Batch Mix plants, just 1 sensor paver with a hopper, 6 Tandem Rollers, and 2 Pneumatic Tire Rollers were used. Such a target has never been dreamt of, set or achieved in the domain of infrastructure, road construction and paving, especially in India.

We had employed Tipper vehicles with GPS monitoring to track their movement. We even developed special customized software called Jawali-Sutra that kept track of how much output each batch-mix plant was giving us; how much material was being consumed; and how much distance was being paved in how much time. With the help of such innovative technologies, all the critical control systems were closely and precisely monitored, recorded, and analyzed on a real-time basis.

Rajpath Infracon Transforming Impossbile to Possible

What other factors worked to achieve the record performance?
When you envisage a dream, it takes shape in the mind. But the main factor that contributes to bringing it to reality is always your team. I have always connected with them with complete transparency and my team has reciprocated with enthusiasm and dedication. The evening before, all my team members gathered at the campsite office and we had a very fervent interaction. I shared with them what it would mean to achieve the honour of breaking the existing Guinness World Records that were achieved in Doha, Qatar, and making a new one for our country. I explained how the forthcoming 5 days would be the days that would shape our future and that of our organization and country. The zealous team responded with passion that amazed me, and I knew the honour would be ours to claim on June 7th, 2022.

We already had a rich experience of team management, discipline, project monitoring and execution during our last stint at making a world record. That fundamental experience provided a sturdy foundation when we were working towards this new goal.

Besides this, all our supporters, well-wishers, bankers, partners, and suppliers of material and machinery, extended their full support and co-operation.

The government plans to expand the highway network by 25,000 km in 2022-23 as per the Union Budget 2022. How daunting will this task be for contractors to achieve?
Our Government has a very progressive approach towards infrastructure development, and has provided ample opportunities for its growth. The infrastructure segment is opening doors to many opportunities - not just road construction. Initiatives like Gati Shakti, which is about developing multimodal connectivity across the nation, is giving great impetus to the infrastructure sector and allied industries.

At Rajpath, we are motivated with the idea of `Ek Bharat, Shrestha Bharat’ to bridge the distances between different parts of the country. Till date, we have been executing roadway projects in Maharashtra mainly, but now we are driven to take up projects on a national level. We have already set a new benchmark for speed and quality of work and we have the experience, expertise, and commitment to quality. As the Hon. Minister of MoRTH, Shri Nitin Gadkari says, we are on ‘pragati ka highway’.

Is Rajpath Infracon looking to enter other segments of infra construction?
We have been in the infra sector for more than 35 years. We have grown steadily in terms of not just turnover, but also project size, manpower, experience, expertise, financial constancy, sustainability, and achievements – all of which speaks of our stability as an infra company. We have always chosen our projects carefully, and opted for the more challenging ones. But we have never taken more than what we can chew!

After breaking the Guinness World Record of 25.279 kms, there were scenes of euphoric celebrations where everyone on the field, laborers to operators, supervisors to managers, suppliers and well-wishers cheered ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai!’. That was the moment of realization for me that we are in the true sense, infrastructure foot-soldiers. And with this I also comprehended that we would henceforth be leading by example. That is why, along with road construction, we shall also look into expansion into other infra sectors over a period of time.

What message would you like to give to young aspirants in the infra construction industry?
I have always harboured an earnest dream to reach out to the aspiring youth of rural India and offer them opportunities to grow professionally. I too come from a rural background, and this is how far I have reached. I want to reach out to this segment of our youth and show them that the infrastructure sector is full of opportunities; it has rich prospects to break the barriers, and it offers great careers.

Our aiming for the new Guinness World Record was not merely to win accolades or business expansion and growth. I want that such achievements will reinforce our youth’s faith in India so that they do not have to seek jobs overseas. Our time has come, and it is for us to grab the opportunity.
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