Rural development aims at improving the quality of life of rural people, and in the process infrastructure variables play a crucial role. India is the second most populous country in the world and the majority of its population lives in rural areas. Rural development has been India’s prime concern ever since the time of independence, and several strategies and plans were implemented from time to time to achieve a better level of development. However, neither top-down, nor bottom-up strategies of development could bring the desired changes. This article attempts to identify some correlates of rural development and tries to understand why the desired level and pattern of development could not be achieved even after seven decades of the planning process. The study analyses the case of ‘Sadar’ development block of Pratapgarh district in Uttar Pradesh. The analysis of 10 selected variables reveals that there is a vast disparity in the level of development in the study area. However, the study shows that lack of basic education, health and credit facilities is the cause of this disparity and poor level of development. In view of the findings the author suggests that a ‘local resource-oriented development strategy’ should be adopted to ensure the holistic development of the rural areas.