THE CONDITION OF ROADS IN THE DISTRICT TILL 1884 was far from satisfactory. The district had no made roads fit for carts; all traffic went over fair-weather tracks on pack bullocks. During the four rainy months the tracks were impassable. During the eight dry months also the tracks were neither smooth nor easy for carts. Pandharpur, Sholapur and Pangaon were the three important centres of traffic. Of the old tracks eight lines centred at Pandharpur, eight at Sholapur, and two at Pangaon in Barshi. In 1883, there were ten lines of made roads together having a length of 382 miles. Besides the made roads, communication was improved by railways. The district then had two railway lines, viz., the Bombay-Madras route of the Great Indian Peninsula Railway with a length of 115 miles in this district and a section of eight miles of the Southern Maratha and Bombay Karnataka Railway. There were forty-one post offices in the district in 1884. In towns and villages which had post offices letters were delivered by thirty-one postmen. In small villages without post offices letters were delivered by sixty-seven postmen. Besides the railway telegraph offices at the different stations, there were two Government telegraph offices at Sholapur and Barshi.

Communications in the district increased especially after the first quarter of the 20th century. Development of the important trading centres like Sholapur, Barshi and Pandharpur necessitated the improvement of communications, both by railways and by roads. Sholapur and Barshi being on the edge of the district, they connected the district with the country outside it while trade of Pandharpur rested on its necessities as a place of pilgrimage. Sholapur, Mohol, Madha and Kurduwadi being railway stations facilitated communications by roads as other trading centres in the district could easily get various commodities from larger trading centres outside the district. The big trading centres like Sholapur, Barshi and Pandharpur were also greatly benefited as they could secure the market outside the district for the local commercial goods.

To-day Sholapur city, the district head-quarters, is well connected by roads as well as by railways with the adjoining districts of Sangli, Satara, Pune, Osmanabad and the Bijapur district of Mysore State. It is also well connected with all the taluka head-quarters and trading centres in the district. The district is served by about 224 kilometres (138.90 miles) of broad gauge, 41.70 kilometres (25.85 miles) of metre gauge and 186.90 kilometres (115.90 miles) of narrow gauge railway lines. The total length of the railway lines in the district is thus 452.60 kilometres (280.65 miles).

During the period 1951-1961 there was no change in the mileage of National highways, while the length of State highways decreased by 5.96 kilometres (3.70 miles). The major district roads increased by 97.32 kilometres (60.34 miles) and the other district roads by 178.79 kilometres (110.85 miles). The total increase in all types of roads in the district during the year under reference was 407 kilometres (254.41 miles).

Under the Nagpur Plan (Road Development Plan for 1961-1981), the district should have 3,764.8 kilometres of roads. The road-length was short of this target by 1,706 kilometres on the eve of the Plan, i.e., on 1st April 1961. The target was achieved in 1970, and in 1972-73 the total length of all types of roads in the district stood at 5,702 kilometres which was in excess of the Plan target by 1,937-2 kilometres.

The ratio of road-length to hundred square kilometres of area was 14.08 kilometres in 1961. It increased to 23.6 kilometres in 1970-71. Though the ratio was increased, it was not satisfactory as compared to the position prevailing in Maharashtra State which was 26.3 kilometres per 100 square kilometres. However, the position in this regard has improved as the ratio worked out to 27.2 kilometres and to 38.0 kilometres at the end of 1971-72 and 1972-73, respectively.

The ratio of road-length to a lakh of population in Sholapur district was 168-70 kilometres in 1967-68. It increased to 252.99 kilometres in 1972-73.

The taluka-wise ratios of road-length to hundred square kilometres area and to a lakh of population are given in table No. 1.

The anticipated expenditure on road development programme in Sholapur district during the Fourth Five-Year Plan was Rs. 48.29 lakhs, the details of which are given below:-

Name of Scheme

Anticipated expenditure

(Rupees in lakhs)

1. District roads


2. Village roads under public participation


3. Black-topping


4. Roads of economic importance


5. Railway safety works




During the Fifth Five-Year Plan (1974-79) the following provisions are made for the road development programme in the District Plan: -

Category of roads

Road-length proposed to be improved
(in kilometres)

Plan estimation
(Rupees in crores)




1. Major district roads



2. Other district roads



3. Village roads






Due to paucity of resources, the Government could not provide the entire estimated amount of Rs. 5.80 crores. It is, therefore, proposed to provide a smaller amount of Rs. 191.50 lakhs for road development programme, the details of which are given below:-


Rupees in lakhs

(i) Spill-over works


(ii) Bridges


(iii) Rural roads


  The details of works mentioned in (i) spill-over works and (ii) bridges (after making certain changes in the amount) are given below:-



(Rupees in lakhs)

1. State sector


2. Local sector


3. Black-topping


4. Construction of bridges




The plan outlay and expenditure on transport and communications for the Fifth Five-Year Plan (1974-1979) and the Annual Plan for 1974-75 are given below:-

(Rupees in lakhs)


Outlay proposed for the Fifth Plan

Annual Plan






1. District roads-


(i) Spill-over works-


(a) State



(b) Local



(ii) Improvement of roads



(iii) Construction of roads



2. Village roads



3. Black. topping of roads



4. Tourism (construction of buildings)