Karnataka's pioneering spirit in the field of power has been translated into several major milestones. Established Asia’s first – Hydro Electric Power Station in Shivanasamudram, on the banks of river Cauvery during 1902. Karnataka the first to embark on Alternating current, when Bangalore City’s lighting scheme was completed. Karnataka had the longest transmission line in the world in 1902, from Shivanasamudram to KGF, covering a distance of 147 km and it was the first state in the country to conceive and set up a professionally managed Corporation Karnataka Power Corporation Limited (or KPCL) owned by the government of Karnataka to plan, construct, operate and maintain power generation projects in the state. That’s the legacy that KPCL started with and built on
The modes for generation of electric power are hydroelectric, thermal, diesel, gas, wind and solar. The company was started on 20.07.1970 due to a vision of the Karnataka government for separate entities for generation and distribution of electric power. This was done, long before world bank dictated power sector reforms were initiated in early 21st century in India. Karnataka Power Corporation Limited began its journey with a humble beginning in 1970. With an installed capacity of 746 MW (1970), it has expanded its capacity to 8738.305 MW (2019). A revenue of Rs.77442 Million in 2019 as compared, to Rs.1.30 Million in 1971, speaks volumes about KPCL's progress.
The total lengths of National Highways and State Highways in Karnataka are 3,973 and 9,829 kilometres (2,469 and 6,107 mi), respectively.
The state transport corporations, transports an average of 2.2 million passengers daily and employs about 25,000 people. The Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) and The Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) headquartered in Bangalore, The North Eastern Karnataka Road Transport Corporation (NEKRTC) headquartered in Gulbarga, and The North Western Karnataka Road Transport Corporation (NWKRTC) headquartered in Hubballi are the 4 state-owned transport corporations.
Karnataka has 11 ports, including the New Mangalore Port, a major port and ten minor ports, of which three were operational in 2012. The New Mangalore port was incorporated as the ninth major port in India on 4 May 1974. This port handled 32.04 million tonnes of traffic in the fiscal year 2006–07 with 17.92 million tonnes of imports and 14.12 million tonnes of exports. The port also handled 1015 vessels including 18 cruise vessels during the year 2006–07. Foreigners can enter Mangalore through the New Mangalore Port with the help of Electronic visa (e-visa). Cruise ships from Europe, North America and UAE arrive at New Mangalore Port to visit the tourist places across Coastal Karnataka. The port of Mangalore is among the 4 major ports of India that receive over 25 international cruise ships every year.
Karnataka has a railway network with a total length of approximately 3,089 kilometres (1,919 mi). Until the creation of the South-Western Railway Zone headquartered at Hubballi in 2003, the railway network in the state was in the Southern Railway zone, South-Central Railway Zone and Western Railway zone. Several parts of the state now come under the South Western Railway zone with 3 Railway Divisions at Bangalore, Mysore, Hubli, with the remainder under the Southern Railway zone and Konkan Railway Zone, which is considered one of India's biggest railway projects of the century due to the difficult terrain. Bangalore and other cities in the state are well-connected with intrastate and inter-state destinations.
Air transport in Karnataka, as in the rest of the country, is still a fledgling but fast expanding sector.
Karnataka has airports at Bangalore, Mangalore, Belgaum, Hubli, Hampi, Bellary, Gulbarga, and Mysore with international operations from Bangalore and Mangalore airports. Shimoga and Bijapur airports are being built and are expected to be operational soon.