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Nitin Patel gets Finance, crisis blows over

The 48-hour-long drama that kept BJP’s Gujarat political circle on tenterhooks ended on Sunday, with party chief Amit Shah granting deputy chief minister Nitin Patel the Finance portfolio, following which the veteran leader took charge.Patel, who was given Road and Building, Health, Medical Education, Narmada, Kalpsar and Capital Project during the portfolio allocation on Thursday night, stayed home and refused to take charge, making his displeasure over taking away important portfolios that he had held in the previous government evident.Addressing the media at his residence in Thaltej, Ahmedabad, around 10:45 am, Patel said, “BJP president Amit Shah called me up in the morning and assured me that I will be given a portfolio which befits my stature as the number two in the cabinet and as the deputy chief minister.””I have no more complaints. I was not happy as I didn’t get a befitting portfolio, but I never crossed the party’s line of discipline,” he added.The deputy CM thanked Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Shah, the Patel community and other leaders who stood by him. He also acknowledged the Sardar Patel Group, an outfit of the Patel community seeking reservation.Though it was a Sunday, Patel rushed to Gandhinagar and assumed charge at 11:39am.With the new allocation, Saurabh Patel, who was orginally given Finance, is now left with just one ministry — Energy.Soon after taking charge, Patel left for his Assembly constituency, Mehsana, to meet his supporters.Shortly after his arrival at Mehsana in the afternoon, Rupani announced in Gandhinagar that the Finance portfolio had been given to Patel and that the issue was over now.”We have made certain changes in the portfolios. We have given Finance to Nitinbhai. With this, the issue is over now. Such small things happen in a big family like the BJP. I have already sent a letter to the Governor, informing him of this change in the portfolios,” the chief minister told reporters.Patel maintained that the issue was not about some departments, but about “self-respect”.”I had conveyed to the party high-command to either give me respectable departments or relieve me from the cabinet,” he said.The veteran leader added that he had been serving the BJP as a “loyal and disciplined” soldier for the last 40 years.The deputy chief minister performed puja at his office and assumed charge. “I will perform all my duties with integrity and honesty. I thank my party for the responsibility they have given me. I had assumed office soon after the swearing-in ceremony and had reviewed the process of purchase of groundnuts by government from farmers at minimum support price. From Monday, the first day of the New Year, the Gujarat government will work on fast track.”In the previous government headed by Rupani, Patel used to handle key portfolios of Finance and Urban Development, among other departments.However, this time, Finance was given to Saurabh Patel, while Rupani kept Urban Development with himself. Unhappy over the allotment, Patel had refrained from taking charge of the departments, prompting the top BJP leadership to swing into action to placate the senior Patidar leader.Sending feelers to the deputy chief minister, Patidar quota agitation leader Hardik Patel on Saturday said he would extend support to him and talk to the Congress leadership to ensure that Patel got the respect he deserved from the party, if he left the BJP, along with 10 other MLAs, and joined hands with the Congress to form a new government.DISPLEASURENitin Patel, who was given Road and Building, Health, Medical Education, Narmada, Kalpsar and Capital Project refused to take charge, making his displeasure over taking away important portfolios evident.

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Vidya Balan: It has to be something like Ijaazat with Shah Rukh Khan
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RUIDP rushes to complete phase two

The Rajasthan Urban Infrastructure Development Project (RUIDP) is expected to ink loan agreement with Asian Development Bank for the Rs 4500 crore fourth phase, the second phase of the project is still lagging behind deadline.The second phase planned to ensure development of urban infrastructure at 15 towns of the state with a cost of Rs 1762 crore was expected to be completed by December 2016. An year past the deadline as the officials attempt to ‘financially’ close the project, work related to STP at Bharatpur and sewerage at Jaisalmer are still pending. “The works related to phase two will be completed by June 2018,” urban development minister Shrichand Kriplani said after a department meeting. The second phase including 109 work packages had completed 22 of these in initial 11 months. However, work delayed on rest for various reasons including public agitation and non performing contractors. In November 2015, four contractor firms were debarred by RUIDP for poor performance, yet the project works continued to delay. As of now with work expenditure of nearly Rs 1700 crore the RUIDP claims to have achieved 96 per cent of its target. Meanwhile, the third phase of the project has commenced from 2014 and is expected to be completed by December 2019. Of the 13 cities covered under the phase work orders of Rs 3300 crore have been issued in 11 cities. At the recent meeting the urban development minister has also asked the officials to ensure that contracts for sewerage works in the remaining two cities of Kota and Mount Abu should be finalised soon. DNA was the first to report on the proposed fourth phase of the project in its July 18 edition. The phase will cover 39 cities including 10 heritage cities.

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Vidya Balan: It has to be something like Ijaazat with Shah Rukh Khan
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Bigg Boss 11: Hiten Tejwani gets evicted from Salman Khan’s show
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BJP gears up to make a mark in states not won

In the midst of celebrations after retaining Gujarat and snatching Himachal Pradesh from the Congress, the BJP has not lost sight of the 2019 General elections. The party is now preparing to make deep inroads into Kerala, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, and the East coast.After a ‘close shave’ in Gujarat, BJP has decided not become complacent. Realising that 2019 might not be a cakewalk for the party, it has renewed its efforts aiming at winning 120-odd seats, and called it Project Coromandal. These seats open a window to make up for the losses it might incur in the northern states.Though the project is a rough reference to a geographical area stretching along the east coast — Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, West Bengal — the North East too has been included in this as a logical political extension.”We cannot afford to be complacent. In UP, we bagged 71 of 80, and in MP we won 27 out of 29. But the point is that we might not be able to better these numbers in 2019 Lok Sabha elections; we may lose some. We need to expand to regions and states where we have not yet made inroads into and where there is scope of expansion. This way we would be able to make up for the losses in the states where we performed spectacularly,” said a senior BJP leader.In the six states of Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, West Bengal and Arunachal Pradesh, out of a total of 190 parliamentary seats, BJP bagged only 15 in 2014 despite a saffron sweep in the rest of the country. The party wants to change that in 2019.BJP’S PERFORMANCE IN 2014 POLLSIn the six states of Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, West Bengal and Arunachal Pradesh, out of a total of 190 parliamentary seats, BJP bagged only 15 in 2014 despite a saffron sweep in the rest of the country

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Yamuna: NGT directs Delhi Jal Board to submit plan on drains in 2 weeks

The National Green Tribunal on Monday directed the Delhi Jal Board (DJB) to submit a complete action plan with regard to the drains in the second phase of the Yamuna cleaning project and ensure that no effluent or waste enters the river.A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar directed the DJB to submit the plan with regard to the six drains to the principal committee, formed by NGT, within two weeks.The green panel directed the principal committee to hold a meeting to examine the action plan and submit a final plan to the tribunal within two months from Monday.The six drains are — Kalkaji, Tehkhand, Maharani Bagh, Qudsia Bagh and Mori gate, Barapulla and Shahdara drain.The meeting scheduled to be held on January 8, 2018 would be attended by senior officials of the National Mission for Clean Ganga, Delhi government, DJB and Delhi Development Authority.It also directed the principal committee, headed by secretary of Ministry of Water Resources, to submit a time- bound plan for laying of sewer networks and installation of sewage treatment plants in the national capital.The matter will now be heard on February 12.The tribunal had earlier noted that work on the Phase-I of the cleaning, christened as ‘Maily Se Nirmal Yamuna’ Revitalisation Project, was already in progress and it would now monitor the work of the next stage.The Phase-I of the clean Yamuna project aims to lower the pollution levels in the Najafgarh and Delhi Gate drains, while Phase-II deals with Shahdara, Barapullah and other drains.The directions came while monitoring the implementation of its ‘Maili se Nirmal Yamuna Revitalisation Project’.

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My first prototype could detect 57% but the latest tech can boast of 93% accuracy: Harshvadhan Zala

A kid can make a huge difference! The impossible task needs to be picked first, if the aim is to change the world, said Harshvadhan Zala, a 15-year-old technology expert, who is now developing drones which detect landmines for the CRPF with 93 per cent accuracy.“World needs 37% accuracy to detect landlines. My first prototype could detect 57% but the latest technology can detect 93% accuracy. I want to serve my nation and work with the Indian army,” Zala said while talking at Tedx Jaipur on Saturday.“I want to see a world without landmines. My first aim was to to remove human interference in detecting land mines and detect them in all kinds of environment,” he added.He then explained that his biggest challenge was not the technical aspect but arranging for finance.“I used my practical knowledge and ideas in the final year projects of engineer friends. I used to collected fee to fund my project,” he said.While narrating his journey he explained that he first built a prototype of a drone, then developed a technology that could detect metallic landmines from a certain height.“However, my drone did not support the tracking technology. I then started working on a drone prototype which was compatible with my detector. I used customised 3D-printed drone which allowed me to attach the technology,” he explained.While talking about the latest development, Zala said that he is now working with CRPF to develop technology that will not only detect landmines but will destroy them.“I have accepted the third challenge of destroying the landmines after detecting them without human interference. The drone will drop a detonator from a certain height which is controlled from the ground room,” Zala explained.He further said that The biggest moment in his journey was when the Director General of CRPF visited Ahemdabad to see his project.

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NHAI contractor inks agreement for ring road

Construction work on Jaipur Ring Road is expected to begin over the next week as the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) formally entered an agreement with Haryana based contract firm for the purpose. The contractor firm ‘Gwar’ has emerged as the lowest bidder among 15 companies to have applied for the Jaipur ring road contract and was issued a letter of interest by the highway authority earlier this month.The contract firm already has sent its team for site evaluation, however, it would still take few more days before work begins on the ground. The firm will be under a strict schedule to complete the project in stipulated time. The contractor firm will have a period of 455 days to complete the 47 kilometers long six-lane road between Jaipur-Agra and Jaipur-Ajmer highway.It has been almost four months since the JDA assigned the task to develop the southern section of proposed Jaipur ring road to NHAI. The urban development department at the time has claimed that the work be completed in 15 months, however, DNA in its article published on August 14 was first to report that it would take nearly 120 days before work is formally awarded to the contract firm.The ring road project has a history of being delays, the work has been juggled between NHAI, JDA and private contractors. It has been after instructions from chief minister Vasundhara Raje that the concerned authorities began to bring the project on track. Even as NHAI has been appointed to develop the road, the process got entangled in various formalities. The JDA took time to reach a foreclosure with the previous contractor firm and the issue of EOI by NHAI was delayed for due clearances from the government. The southern ring road is estimated to cost Rs 960 crore and will be completed in the first quarter of 2019.INSTRUCTIONSThe ring road project has a history of being delays, the work has been juggled between NHAI, JDA and private contractors. It has been after instructions from chief minister Vasundhara Raje that the concerned authorities began to bring the project on track.

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NHAI incentivises its officials to implement Bharatmala Project

Taking a cue from the private sector wherein performing employees are rewarded, the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) too has offered incentives to implement ‘Bharatmala’ project to stick to the given timeline.“In order to expedite implementation of the Bharatmala Pariyojna, the project launched by the Government of India with prime focus on optimising efficiency of the movement of goods and people across the country, NHAI has decided to start an incentive scheme for its officials,” read NHAI’s statement released on Friday.As per the plans, the incentive scheme will not only help in achieving the project as per the schedule but may also help in completing project implementation before the deadline.There would be cash rewards apart from certificate of appreciation and trophies.In October the Union Cabinet had approved Road Building Program over the next five years wherein a capital expenditure of Rs 6.92 lakh crore will be incurred for 83,677 kms of road. This Road Building Program includes India’s biggest highway development project – Bharatmala.Under the Bharatmala Project, Rs 5.35 lakh crore will be spent to have 34,800 kms of roads. There would be Economic Corridors (9,000-kms), Inter Corridor and Feeder Route (6,000-kms), National Corridors Efficiency Improvement (5,000-kms), Border Roads and International Connectivity (2,000-kms), Coastal Roads and Port Connectivity (2,000-kms), Greenfield Expressways (800-kms), Balance National Highways Development Project works (10,000-kms), etc.In the first phase of Bharatmala Project, 2,000-kms of Coastal Roads and Port Connectivity will be constructed starting 2018.

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INS Kalvari, first Scorpene-class submarine, to be commissioned by PM Modi tomorrow

Kalvari, the first of the six Scorpene-class submarines handed over by shipbuilder Mazagon Dock Limited, will be commissioned into the Navy by Prime Minister Narendra Modi here tomorrow.The prime minister will unveil its plaque at the commissioning ceremony tomorrow, an official told PTI.This will be preceded by reading out the commissioning warrant, hoisting of colours and breaking of commissioning pennant with national anthem, the official said.Pennant is a tapering flag on a ship, especially one flown at the masthead of a vessel in commission.Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Navy chief Admiral Sunil Lanba, Vice Admiral Girish Luthra, Flag Officer Commanding of the Western Naval Command, and top defence officials will attend the commissioning ceremony.”Kalvari underwent around 120 days of extensive sea trials and tests for various equipment,” the official said, adding the vessel is expected to bolster Indias maritime prowess.The submarines, designed by French naval defence and energy company DCNS, are being built by Mazagon Dock Limited (MDL) in Mumbai as part of Project-75 of the Indian Navy.”The technology utilised in the Scorpene has ensured superior stealth features such as advanced acoustic silencing techniques, low radiated noise levels, hydro-dynamically optimised shape and the ability to launch a crippling attack on the enemy using precision guided weapons,” an official of the MDL said.Kalvari is named after the dreaded tiger shark, a deadly deep sea predator of the Indian Ocean.The first Kalvari, commissioned on December 8, 1967, was also the first submarine of the Indian Navy. It was decommissioned on May 31, 1996 after nearly three decades of service.

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Yamuna water to resolve drinking, irrigation issues; report set

The state government has started preparations to bring Yamuna water in the state. It will be brought to Churu district via pipeline from Ghaziabad in Uttar Pradesh and will be used for drinking and irrigation in Churu, Jhunjhunu and Sikar district. The Water Resources Department has prepared a project of Rs 20 thousand crores for this.Water Resources Minister Dr Ram Pratap, during a press conference on Monday, said that the pre-feasibility report of 20 thousand crore rupees for bringing Yamuna water to Rajasthan was presented in the Central Water Commission(CWC). The Commission has approved the report and has appreciated the state government for this. Now, DPR will be made and sent to the CWC. Principal Secretary Shikhar Agrawal said that under this project, about 270 KM long, five pipelines of 3.2-meter diameter each will be laid down from Ghaziabad to Rajgarh (Churu) after which, the irrigation and drinking problem of the area will be resolved. On the fourth anniversary of the state government, Dr Ram Pratap organized a press conference and told about four years achievements of his department. He said that the government sanctioned the budget of Rs 11 thousand 930 crores in four years whereas, in the previous government’s five years, only 4 thousand 257 crores projects were made. He said that many major projects will be inaugurated and laid out in coming days. In this order, the foundation stone of Parwan Project will be laid on December 15 and work orders of Rs 273 crores have been issued for construction of dam and tunnel under this and after 15 days, the foundation stone for the construction of the Isarda dam will be done. Similarly, the foundation stones of the Batissa Nallah Project and Dholpur Lift and Irrigation Project in Sirohi district will be put up. “State government has formed Rajasthan River Basin and Water Resources Planning Authority. Under the Eastern Basin Transfer Project, drinking water and Irrigation facility will be provided in 2 lakh hectare area in 13 districts namely Jhalawar, Baran, Kota, Bundi, Sawaimadhopur, Ajmer, Tonk, Jaipur, among others,” said minister.LOAN WAIVER: A REPLY, NOT ANSThe Minister of Water Resources, Dr Ram Pratap, did not give a clear answer to the farmers’ bank loan waiver, on Monday. But in a philosophical way, the minister said that all political parties and farmers have to solve it, by studying this problem.In order to consider the demand for farmers’ debt waiver, the state government had formed a committee under the chairmanship of Dr Ram Pratap. On the question, in a press conference, Dr Ram Pratap said that in states like Kerala, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra etc., it has been declared to waive bank loans of farmers. These states have announced debt waiver, but have not done anything on the ground. He mentioned that something has happened in Kerala and Karnataka in this direction for debt waiver. That’s why our government sent a team of officials to study. Apart from this, the members of the committee, co-operative Minister Ajay Singh Kilak and Minister of State for Energy Pushpendra Singh, went to Karnataka to study the work.

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Mumbai-Nagpur E-way: Trust deficit hits land acquisition

While one of the largest land acquisition exercises is currently underway in the state for the construction of 701-km Mumbai Nagpur Super Expressway, officials involved in the process claim that due to trust deficit in the government, few landholders are opting for land pooling, and are instead selling their land to the government.Under land pooling, landholders get 30 per cent of the developed land after 10 years, which is one of the reasons behind not much are willing to wait for 10 years. The Rs 46,000 crore Expressway will need 10,000 hectares of land and the distance of 700 km between Mumbai and Nagpur will be covered in just 8-10 hours.The project is currently at bidding stage and the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) claims to have acquired 2,500 hectares of land out of the total required 10,000 hectares of land for the Expressway.An MSRDC official said, “Majority of the landholders who are giving their land for the project are not going for land pooling and instead directly selling their land. This is because inland pooling landholders have to wait for 10 years to get developed land, and it seems there is a trust deficit in minds of people when it comes to dealing with the government.”The MSRDC is offering five times more the rate than the prevailing ready reckoner rate of a particular area in case an individual coming to give its land for the project on its own.The official, added, “But very few are opting for land pooling considering they will have to wait for 10 years to get the developed land, and also there is trust deficit. But even selling off their lands is not causing any loss. They are getting more than what is the actual market rate.”

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Vasundhara Raje wants top quality water storage structures

Laying stress on no compromise on construction quality for water storage structures being built under Mukhyamantri Jal Swavlamban Abiyaan (MJSA), chief minister Vasundhara Raje instructed the district collectors to give priority to finalising Detailed Project Report (DPR) of third phase of the campaign slated to commence from December 9. Raje on Monday was reviewing the campaign in a meeting along with senior officials engaged with it at her residence.“The collectors must complete DPR on priority so that third phase of the campaign can be started on schedule. The in-charge ministers, secretaries and other people’s representatives to attend inaugural programmes of the campaign in districts identified. Similarly, more and more people invited by organizing a special program at the sub-division and village panchayat level,” says a government statement quoting Raje as saying.The third phase of the campaign in the desert districts state will begin from December 9. Later, in the three non-desert districts- Alwar, Ajmer and Bhilwara, it will commence from December 15 while in remaining non-desert districts it is likely to start from January 20, 2018. Raje has instructed the officials to popularise the campaign so people could be aware what it holds.“The campaign started with the aim of making the state self-reliant in the availability of water for drinking water and agriculture works has received unprecedented support of the common man. The MJSA has become the subject of discussion in the country and the world with its success,” said Raje.Chairman of the Rajasthan River Basin Authority Shriram Vedire gave a presentation on the preparations of the next phase of MJSA to the CM. He informed that in the third phase, water storage structures will be developed in 4,840 villages in the districts. “The work of making and approving the Detailed Action Plan (DPR) at the district level is underway,” he apprised the CM.
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CBI takes over probe in Gomti riverfront scam

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has registered a case into alleged irregularities in the Rs 1,513-crore Gomti Riverfront Development scam in Lucknow that took place during Samajwadi Party government rule in Uttar Pradesh.The case was registered after Yogi Adityanath-led BJP government in Uttar Pradesh had constituted an inquiry into the beautification project of the Gomti riverfront and found irregularities.The CBI has registered an FIR against eight engineers. According to the FIR, the case has been filed against then chief engineers Gulesh Chandra, SN Sharma, Qazim Ali, then superintendent engineers Mangal Yadav, Akhil Raman, Kamaleshwar Singh, Roop Singh Yadav and executive engineer Surendra Yadav. Gulesh Chandra, Shiv Mangal Yadav, Akhil Raman and Roop Singh Yadav retired later.The state government constituted committee, under retired Allahabad High Court judge Alok Kumar Singh, had indicated prima facie irregularities in the project in its report dated May 16, 2017.After Uttar Pradesh police registered a case on June 19 on the basis of the report, the state government, on July 17, sought a CBI probe into the matter.The Centre referred the matter to the CBI on November 24, 2017 on the basis of which the agency has now taken over investigation.It has been found that the total allocation for the project is Rs 1,513 crore and 95 per cent of the budget — which comes to around Rs 1,435 crore — had already been spent, though only less than 60 per cent of the work has been completed.Gomti river, meandering through the 940-kilometre stretch of rich alluvial plains of Uttar Pradesh, is polluted by industrial effluents and domestic discharge.The river becomes more of a flowing dumping yard for the 15 smaller and bigger towns, including Lakhimpur Kheri, Sitapur, Lucknow, Sultanpur and Jaunpur, in its catchment area. The major sources of pollution in the Gomti are industrial waste from sugar factories and distilleries and sewage from habitations.The Gomti Riverfront Project was launched by the Samajwadi Party in 2013 to beautify the banks of the river as well as to channelise it.THE PROJECTThe Gomti Riverfront Project was launched by the Samajwadi Party in 2013 to beautify the banks of the river as well as to channelise it. The Adityanath government wanted the scam allegations referred to the CBI, which took over the investigation on Thursday.
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Yogi Adityanath


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Sanjay Roye is the new flag officer for Guj Naval Area

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Rear Admiral Sanjay Roye took over the reins of the Gujarat, Daman and Diu Naval Area from Rear Admiral Sandeep Beecha, as its third Flag Officer Commanding Gujarat Naval Area (FOGNA), at a ceremonial parade held at its headquarters on Monday.Prior to this appointment, he was serving as the Project Director (Operations and Training) at Advance Technology Vessel Project headquarters at New Delhi. He had joined the NDA in 1983 and was commissioned in the Indian Navy in 1986. A recipient of the coveted ‘Binoculars’ and ‘CNS Gold Medal’ for being adjudged the ‘Best All-round Cadet’ and ‘First in Order of Merit’ during cadet’s and midshipman training respectively, he has commanded Indian Naval Submarines Sindhurakshak, Sindhuraj and Chakra.FOGNA is responsible to the Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Western Naval Command for all naval operations in Gujarat Daman and Diu Naval Area, security of its coast and Offshore Development Areas.

Inland waterway terminal at Haldia gets green nod

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The proposed Inland Waterways terminal at Haldia, West Bengal, has been accorded Coastal Regulatory Zone (CRZ) clearance subject to specific conditions regarding protection of Gangetic dolphins and marine biodiversity. The proposed Haldia terminal on National Waterways-1 (NW- 1) will facilitate the bulk transportation of material and products through barges.The final CRZ clearance for the project came nearly six months after the Ministry of Environment and Forests’ Expert Appraisal Committee (EAC) on Infrastructure Development and Coastal Regulation Zone recommended it for clearance on May 11.The Rs 516 crore project partially falls under the CRZ-IB, CRZ-II and CRZ-IVB zone and according to the EAC, the terminal’s construction will have impacts on aquatic flora and water quality. In its clearance, the environment ministry has directed that 2% of the project cost or 10.32 crore has to be spent for marine and coastal biodiversity protection and conservation measures by the Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI). West Bengal Coastal Zone Management Authority has to monitor implementation of these measures every six months.Further, IWAI has to commission a study on Gangetic Dolphin habitats and formulate roadmap for its conservation with a time bound manner, within two years, the ministry said. For protection of marine ecology, the ministry has directed IWAI to ensure that mudflats around the project site should be conserved with specific focus on waders. Waders are a group of birds that feed in wetlands and mudflats.The IWAI’s Haldia terminal project is an integral part of the larger Jal Marg Vikas Project on River Ganga that involves development of the 1,620-kms long National Waterway-I between Allahabad and Haldia. In December 2016, in December 2016, Mumbai-based ITD Cementation India Limited won the bid for construction of the terminal and the work was awarded this year on June 30.According to the Ministry of Shipping’s release in September 2016, the terminal has already received an estimated cargo commitment of 5.92 million tons per annum. The Haldia terminal will be developed within the Industrial Zone of Haldia Dock complex and will include jetty, berth, storage sheds, roads green area, administrative building, silos and other allied facilities.

Declare ERCP a national project: Vasundhara Raje

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Chief minister Vasundhara Raje on Tuesday called on Union minister for Water Resources, Nitin Gadkari in New Delhi and requested him to expedite pending irrigation, river projects and release funds.Rajasthan for a long time has been raising demand to declare Eastern Rajasthan Canal Project (ERCP) a national project so the Centre can share 60 percent of the its cost estimated at Rs 37,000 crores. Raje raised the very demand again before Gadkari.Raje told him that Centre should assist the project which has been planned to meet water demands of 40 per cent population of state. The project has been envisaged to provide water to two lakh hectares land spread in 13 districts, she said. Gadkari once again assured her to consider the request.The minister apprised Raje that his ministry has approved Rs14 crores for restorations of 36 water resources project. “The first installment of the fund will be released soon for restoration and repairing of 36 projects,” said Gadkari, quotes a statement released by Raje office.Meanwhile the CM has floated several proposals demanding financial assistance of Center to support the projects. Raje urged him to approve Rs2000 crores to restore and repair Sirhind and Rajasthan feeder so the civil works could expedited to complete the project by April 2018. Similarly, she asked Center to nod Parwan project giving more financial assistance to it.The Center has to release its share of Rs328 crores for Narbada and Gang Canal projects. “A request has been made by Raje to release outstanding amount of Rs328 crores as the Central share for the projects Narbada and Gang Canal Project during the meeting.” said the statement.PROPOSAL APPROVEDRaje has expressed joy over union agriculture ministry’s move to approve additional procurement proposal of moong floated by Rajasthan. The ministry of India has approved Rajasthan govt’s proposed additional 1,24,000MT Moong.

Cessed bldgs: Panel suggests tough action

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A committee formed by the state government for the redevelopment of cessed buildings has suggested that if a developer abandons a redevelopment project midway and isn’t completing it, then the government may auction his other properties and use the funds to complete the project.Ajay Choudhari, Shiv Sena MLA from Sewree and member of the committee said, “If a developer abandons the project midway, why should tenants suffer? His other properties should be attached, and it should be auctioned off. The funds can then be used to redevelop the property, and through Mhada it can be redeveloped.”The suggestions made by Choudhari and other members of the committee are with housing department right now.There are more than 100 projects where redevelopment of cessed buildings by private developers, as allowed under Development Control Regulation 33 (7), are stuck owing to the delays caused by them.Choudhari said that some tenants and residents had approached the High Court in a similar case of a developer abandoning the project. “In this case, the court had suggested auctioning off the other properties belonging to the developer to complete the project so then why not here,” said Choudhari.

Oil’s well: PM to lay Barmer refinery foundation in Dec

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Prime Minister Narendra Modi will lay the foundation stone of Barmer Refinery-cum-Petrochemical complex in December, Union minister for petroleum and natural gas, and skill development and entrepreneurship Dharmendra Pradhan informed the media while visiting Bharatiya Skill Development University (BSDU) on Friday.“The refinery project has got environment clearance. We have sought time from the Prime Minister and most likely its foundation will be laid by him next month,” Pradhan said, claiming that India is moving fast in the direction of skill development and Modi himself monitors the schemes under it.The Raje government is in war-footing mode to launch the project at the earliest. The reason is previous Gehlot government, which claims the refinery its brainchild, had signed an MoU with HPCL (Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited) before the Assembly elections in 2013 but failed to turn into reality.When Raje came into power, she said that state needed to renegotiate the project. After almost three years of negotiations, the state government signed a new MoU with HPCL in April this year for setting up the complex.As per the agreement, the HPCL has a 74 per cent stake while the state government holds a 26 per cent stake in the new firm which is called HPCL Rajasthan Refinery Limited (HRRL). The total cost of the project is Rs 43,129 crore. Raje at the time of signing MoU claimed that new agreement led to significant savings of Rs 40,000 crore. Also, the state would receive 12 per cent Return On Investment instead of earlier 2 per cent mentioned in Gehlot’s agreement.After the MoU, the cordial relations between Raje and Pradhan speeded up the project. Pardhan’s ministry was entrusted to get clearance from ministry of environment which has been done. Modi also gave consent to lay the foundation stone on the request of Raje as well. It will be his second visit to Rajasthan in four months after Udaipur in August. The state machinery is also in full swing to prepare for the stone foundation ceremony of the project which will change economics of Rajasthan and boost employment. “The formalities for the foundation laying ceremony of the refinery are being worked out. The industries department has allotted 4,563 acres of land in Pachpadra to the Rajasthan HPCL limited. The lease deed draft has been finalised by the district collect of Barmer as well,” says a knowledgeable source in the state’s mines and petroleum department.FactfileAfter prolonged negotiations that lasted over three years, Rajasthan government on April 19, 2017 signed a revised MoU with HPCL for a 9 million metric tonne crude oil refinery at Barmer that would require investments of Rs 43,129 crore and produce fuels meeting BS-VI specifications.Announcing the details, Union minister of state for petroleum and natural gas Dharmendra Pradhan said the deal will save the state Rs 40,000 crore with annual viability gap funding of Rs 1,123 crore for 15 years instead of Rs 3,736 crore as per the previous MoU that former CM Ashok Gehlot signed with HPCL.The super success of Pradhan has made him face of BJP in Odisha also where the saffron party is trying to outperform Naveen Patnaik’s BJD, once an ally of BJP. The state when goes to polls, in every likelihood BJP will try to cash in his achievements and connectivity with masses to triumph in Odisha.

Canal project likely to quench 13 dist of Raj

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The ambitious Eastern Rajasthan Canal project (ERCP) aimed to provide water to 13 districts, almost 40 percent of desert state’s geographical area, is set to turn into a reality, finally. WAPCOS, a government of India undertaking under ministry of water resources, has given word to submit a detailed project report (DPR) on project cost at Rs40,000 crore on November 17, a day after the Chief minister Vasundhara Raje’s scheduled meeting with union water resource minister Nitin Gadkari in New Delhi, in which she is expected to demand financial assistance for the project requesting to give it a status of National Project.“The WAPCOS will submit DPR on the ERCP project on November 17. Post to it, we will forward the report to the water resource ministry seeking 60 percent financial assistance to the project under national project scheme, while the rest 40 percent Rajasthan will raise from other financial institutions. The CM also might raise demand for financial help from Gadkari,” said a senior official engaged with the project requesting anonymity. The official also informed that Raje earlier requested for assistance to the Center declaring ERPC a national project but the centre is yet to take a call on it. “The project was in limbo for several years. Now, we have received the DPR which was scheduled to be drafted by May, 2017. If the centre further delays decision on the project, then it would be an uphill task for Rajasthan to arrange funds for the project which is over Rs40,000 crore,” said the very source.The project has been envisaged to achieved water requirements to 13 districts of Rajasthan. It is planned to harvest surplus yield available in southern Rajasthan rivers.THREE PHASESAs per the department sources, the project divided into three phases will meet drinking, irrigation and industrial water needs of thirteen districts of southern Rajasthan-Jhalawar, Bara, Kota, Bundi, Sawaimadhopur, Ajmer, Tonk, Jaipur and others

Mumbai: Petition filed in Bombay High Court against slum demolition drive

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Former minister and senior Congress legislature Mohd Arif (Nasim) Khan, has moved the Bombay High Court against the alleged illegal shifting of the slum dwellers residing along the water pipeline in L ward. The matter will be heard on Tuesday. The plea says that authorities have initiated a demolition drive and shifting of the around 2600 families residing in the slum area of Chandivali assembly constituency which includes 1. Ambedkar Nagar 2. Uday Nagar3. Milind Nagar, Powai.However, the slum dwellers are willing to shift and ready to occupy the permanent alternate accommodation within the periphery of 2 to 3 km as per the guidelines of the state government. But the authorities are giving them accommodation in Mahul which is 25 km far from their original. The petition also prays for directions to authorities to accommodate the eligible slum dwellers in the buildings constructed by HDIL at Kurla, where 17000 flats were constructed for the Airport Project affected people and as per the biometric survey of the airport only 12000 structures are lying hence the remaining flats can easily be allotted to the petitioner.

Green ministry panel defers nod for Indo-Nepal hydel project

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The environmental clearance for the Rs 33,108-crore Pancheshwar hydroelectric dam project in Uttarakhand, proposed to be the world’s second tallest at 315 metres, has been deferred.The expert appraisal committee (EAC) of the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change said in its meeting on October 24 that pending submission of supplementary impact studies wildlife and environment, the wildlife clearance and a site visit, decision on the project should be deferred, official minutes show.The project is a joint venture between India and Nepal conceived under the Mahakali treaty signed in 1996. It involves construction of a 315-metre tall rock-fill hydropower dam across Mahakali River, 2.5-km downstream of the confluence of Mahakali and Sarju River and would have a total installed capacity of 5,040 MW with the inclusion of a smaller 240MW hydropower dam.The project requires a total of 9,100 hectares of land and area of 7,600 hectares, while 31,023 families will lose their land. The EAC said it would require to study the environmental impact assessment report for the Nepal portion of the project to get a holistic view. It also directed the project proponent to obtain wildlife clearance as the project was located 300 metres from the Ascot Wildlife Sanctuary.

Railways’ new project to boost employee productivity

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In light of constant bad publicity on account of derailments, accidents, poor services and inefficiency of its employees, the Indian Railway has decided to go in for an image makeover by increasing the productivity and efficiency of its employees.Under Project Saksham, over the next one year, all employees in each zone will be put through a week’s training in skills and knowledge relevant to their work area.In a recent letter to all the Zonal General Managers, Chairman Railway Board (CRB) Ashwani Lohani noted that there is a need to do a concentrated capsule of training for all employees in a short period of time to boost their efficiency.”Please ensure that such priority training need is quickly identified for each category of employees based on the need of your zone. Identification of training needs and formulation of planned training calender altijd be completed by December 31, 2017, ensuring that each employee is imparted training,” said Lohani.The training will be a five-day-on-the-job or classroom training in Rilway Training Centres, depending on the nature of their employment.Instructing the general managers to ensure that the reporting managers of all employees are actively involved in the training processes, Lohani has asked them to focus on “making a difference” on the job.”The training must be completed within 9 months,” wrote Lohani asking the general managers to personally monitor the completion of the plans and their progress by devising metrics to monitor the impact of the project Saksham.Project sakshamUnder Project Saksham, over the next one year, all employees of the Indian Railways in each zone will be put through a week’s training in skills and knowledge relevant to their area of work

‘Bharatmala’ to benefit border districts of state

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Border districts in Rajasthan are going to be the biggest beneficiaries of central government’s ambitious ‘Bharatmala’ project. The project will strengthen road network in border areas connecting villages on the western front with national highways.Under the project, the state will have 1800km roads running through Jodhpur, Jaisalmer, Barmer and Sriganganagar with estimated expenditure of Rs 10,000 crore. Apart from strategic benefits, the network will also provide the transport facility to the people in these tough terrains who have been living without roads even during peace time.National highway authority of India (NHAI) will begin work on 1400km roads in March next year. The project will be completed in two years. “This is an important project from national security point of view as well as providing road connectivity to the people in border areas,” said MK Jain, NHAI CGM.Since, land could not be acquired for 400km stretch; the work will begin after completion of acquisition process. The road network in border areas is in pathetic condition at present.The central government has prepared 10 packages for Rajasthan, under which eight in Barmer and two in Jodhpur would connect these districts with other border districts. The DPR consultant has been appointed and agreements have been signed. The package include road connectivity to Tanot from Jaisalmer, Munabao to Tanot, Pokran to Uttarlai, Ganganagar to Suratgarh and Baap to Ramdevra. All packages will have four-lane paved shoulders.

Sassoon Dock to turn into a public art space

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Local fishing community women at Sassoon Dock had been busy helping international artists for an art exhibition at over 140-year-old Sassoon Dock. With the theme of contemporary art, over 20 artist will be exhibiting their artwork and installations at the Sassoon Dock Art Project. The exhibition will be open for the public from November 11 till December end.As part of Start Mumbai 2017 Urban Art Festival, the St+art India Foundation along with Asian Paints came up with an initiative — Sassoon Dock Art Project. The exhibition displays installations, murals, audio-visual artwork, screenings at Sassoon Dock by transforming it into a public art exhibition.Giulia Ambrogi, Co-Founder and Festival Curator of St+art India Foundation, said, “Not many have visited Sassoon Dock. Through this art exhibition, the objective is to unlock the space for visitors and activate it with artwork, performances and installations. The target audience is young people, bloggers, designers, architecture. Every weekend we will be transforming it into a pop-up culture hub. It focuses on contemporary art related to a global audience, with a local approach.”According to the organisers, the local fishing community have been of great support. The installation also gives out a social message.Tan Zi Xi, an artist who was helped by few of the fishing women has made an installation of the effects of plastic on the environment, said, “The concept came to my mind after reading few articles on the effects of plastic on the ocean. We used recycled material for the installation. Through this installation, visitors will be able to see the view of affected ocean from a fish’s viewpoint. The installation required a lot of helping hands, and the local women engage through various activities to complete the installation.”SOCIAL MESSAGEOne of the artists, Tan Zi Xi, from Singapore, with the help of local fishwerwomen, has made an installation showing the effects of plastic on the ocean. She has used recycled material Visitors will be able to see a fish’s viewpoint of the affected oceans

Elevated Road set for delay

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Under construction, Bais Godown flyover raising from LIC office to Sodala Tri-junction will get completed in January 2019, post to the Rajasthan assembly election which the BJP government plans to capitalise on the agenda of development and flagship schemes.The chief minister Vasundhara Raje while laying foundation laying ceremony of the project on August 2016 had instructed JDA to finish civil works of the project by October 2018, just before the bugle of election schedule is likely to be heard.The deadline clearly depicts the government intends to sail election smoothly banking on it, particularly in Jaipur. Once complete, the road is expected to save nearly 40 minutes of travelling time and decongest Hawa Sadak as it would offer a non-stop drive at a speed of up to 50 kmph. In fine, thousands to get benefit from the 2.8 km long elevated road which has been awarded to Simplex Infrastructure Limited (SIL) at Rs 240 crore.The sources said that poor planning, traffic flow and time taking process in shifting cables and lines affected the civil works forcing the JDA to change its deadline to January 9, 2019.In a reply submitted to a question raised by BJP MLA Pratap Singh Singhvi the authority accepted it and quoted a fresh deadline.The engineers engaged with the project, however, have a different version of the new deadline. They accept that the CM gave them a deadline to finish its works by October 2018 but when the contract was awarded the deadline extended to January 2019.“The new deadline was mentioned in the contract itself. We are doing our best and the project will be finished on the time.So far nearly 65 percent of foundation works got completed and 16 out of 116 pier caps have been constructed,” Vivek Sharma, JDA executive engineer, who is looking after the project told to DNA.Notably, the length of the elevated road from Ambedkar Circle to Sodala is 2.8km. One wing of the project will branch out at Chambal Power House on Hawa Sarak to connect with areas like Swej Farm and Shyam Nagar.

NGT tells Delhi govt and Jal board to explain why they shouldn’t face contempt over Yamuna cleaning project

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Delhi government and the Delhi Jal Board (DJB) on Monday came under fire for delaying compliance of orders on the Yamuna cleaning project of the National Green Tribunal, which asked them to show cause why contempt proceedings should not be initiated against them.In a chamber meeting held at the NGT premises, a bench headed by Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar rapped the authorities saying that except for shifting blame, the stakeholders, including the city government, had no reasons to offer in support of their “inaction and non-cooperation” for completing the project.It also asked them to explain why the amount earmarked by the Delhi government and the DJB for Yamuna rejuvenation should not be attached for violation of the NGT orders.The Phase-I of the clean Yamuna project aims to lower the pollution levels in the Najafgarh and Delhi Gate drains, while Phase-II deals with Shahdara, Barapullah and other drains.The green panel said it was a matter of great regret that the judgement of the tribunal in relation to cleaning and rejuvenation of river Yamuna passed on January 13, 2015 have not been complied with by the various stakeholders till date.During the meeting which went for over an hour, DJB CEO Keshav Chandra told the tribunal that work on Phase-1 of the project was stopped as the AAP government had initiated enquiry against him for alleged financial irregularities over the setting up of sewage treatment plants.The NGT took exception over this submission and asked why the DJB CEO did not approach the NGT, instead of stopping the work.It directed DJB to file a detailed reply in ten days and posted the matter for further hearing on November 6.Advocate Kush Sharma, appearing for Delhi Development Authority (DDA), said they have complied with the NGT orders and were releasing the money as demanded by the DJB.He said even the NGT has appreciated the steps taken by the DDA for Yamuna cleaning.The meeting was attended by the chief secretary of Delhi government, DDA vice chairman Udai Pratap Singh, DJB CEO, representative of the project proponent Larsen & Toubro and officials from National Mission for Clean Ganga.The tribunal had earlier directed the Delhi government and DJB to submit a status report on the progress of the work in the first phase of cleaning the river Yamuna.It had then directed Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh to file a complete report of the stretch of the Yamuna falling beyond the national capital.The green panel had said that pollution in the Yamuna was of serious concern as it was highly contaminated by industrial effluents and sewage.It had also asked Haryana and Himachal Pradesh Pollution Control Board to jointly conduct a study of water quality and the flow of Yamuna at the point it enters Haryana, and submit the list of industries located in the catchment area.The green panel had noted that almost 67% of the pollutants reaching Yamuna would be treated by the two sewage treatment plants at Delhi Gate and Najafgarh under the first phase of the ‘Maili se Nirmal Yamuna Revitalisation Project’.

Govind Dev ji Temple to develop under the Krishna Circuit

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Capital’s most spiritual, Govind Dev ji Temple will be developed as a tourist and spiritual place under the Jaipur Smart City Mission. Sri Krishna Smart Circuit will develop the temple, connecting it to Tadkeshwar temple. Jaipur Smart City Limited (JSCL) has prepared the Detail Project Report (DPR) for the same, while the tender for the project will be invited by December.Notably, Govind Dev ji is one of the main Krishna temples in the country which is visited by lakhs of tourists every year. Based on the importance of the temple, JSCL has included it in the Area Best Development(ABD) plan of Shri Krishna Smart Circle under the smart city mission. Like the Govind Dev ji temple, Gopinath temple located in the Purani Basti is of great spiritual importance as well. It is also called the the Chhota Govind Dev ji.Hence the Gopinath temple will also be added in the Shri Krishna Smart Circle. Krishna Circuit project is a part of GOI’s ‘Swadesh Darshan’ scheme of re-discovering one’s own country. The circuit will connect important Krishna temples especially Govind Devji and Gopinathji in the Walled City and key heritage places like, Jantar-Mantar, City Palace and Hawa Mahal.The circuit will include Jai Niwas Bagh, Talkatora, Paundrik Park, Jaleb Chowk, Chaugan Stadium precinct, streets and other areas for interventions. Phase-1 of Shri Krishna Smart Circuit covers the journey from Tadkeshwar Temple to Govind Devji Temple. The path runs adjacent to several important structures and gates including City Palace, Jantar-Mantar, Brij Nidhi Temple, Anand Krishan Bihari Ji Temple and passes through Aatish Market, Chandni Chowk and Jaleb Chowk.THE HIGHLIGHTSPedestrian oriented plan that includes public plazas, sidewalks Street furniture, artworks, water ATM, seating facilities, , trees, landscaping and water fountains with spray mist. Facade lighting, pedestrian scale light poles.

5 years on, Bhayander-Naigaon Sea Link estimate up by 200%

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Administrative delays and pending environmental clearance have led to the construction cost of the 5.3-km-long Sea Link connecting Bhayander and Naigaon over the Vasai creek to increase by more than 200 per cent. The estimated cost from Rs 300 crore in 2013 has increased to around Rs 1,000 crore in 2017.The project is planned to run parallel to the Western Railway Bridge between Bhayander and Naigaon. However, the project has failed to take off since 2007 since the first time it was conceptualised. The project has been stuck owing to environmental clearance and villagers of Panju Island over which the sea link passes.A senior MMRDA official, said, “We are going to approach the forest department for the clearance of mangroves and have also approached the salt commissioner in Delhi. The updated cost of the project is now around Rs 1,000 crore. It is very obvious as there is an escalation of cost on annual basis.” The official further added, “We are currently in the process of preparing an environmental impact assessment report and simultaneously a tree count is also underway to identify the number of trees that will have to be axed.”However, to recover the project cost, MMRDA is yet to decide whether commuters would be charged the toll or not. “We will construct the sea link and hand it over to the Mira-Bhayander Municipal Corporation (MBMC) for operation and maintenance. It will then be up to them to decide on levying toll for motorists or not. Tenders for construction work will be floated by March 2018,” a MMRDA official said.Motorists travelling to Naigaon and further down to Vasai, Virar and towards Gujarat can use this sea link.

Gangster DK Rao arrested in extortion case

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>With the heat already on, on the Dawood Ibrahim and Ravi Pujari gangs for allegedly threatening builders for extortion, the Mumbai Crime Branch’s Criminal Intelligence Unit (CIU) on Wednesday arrested gangster DK Rao, a former close aide of gangster Chhota Rajan for allegedly threatening an SRA consultant and demanding a sum Rs 50 lakh.According to the police, in 2013, the complainant was looking forward to develop an SRA project at Antop Hill. For the past one year, Rao, who was then lodged in jail had been threatening the consultant to back out of the project.Rao wanted to appoint a builder known to him in the construction of the said project, and hence he was forcing the complainant to quit the project.Later, Rao’s aides stalled the project work and the complainant was informed that no further work in the project would be carried out without Rao’s permission, police said.”When Rao came out of bail in July 2016 he began to threaten the complainant. In June this year the complainant was called at Dharavi to meet Rao and was again threatened by Rao, and was asked to leave the project. Rao also demanded an amount of Rs 50 lakh from the victim. Due to this constant pressure the victim approached Dharavi police and lodged a complaint,” said Dilip Sawant, Deputy Commissioner Police (detection).”Our probe is on to ascertain if anyone else is involved in the crime, and more arrests are likely to take place in the case,”he added.Rao was produced before the court on Thursday and has been remanded to police custody till October 18.The Mumbai police has urged more complainants to come forward.Rao has over 20 cases registered against him in Mumbai, Thane and Navi Mumbai including extortion, threatening and robberies. He was released from jail last year after being acquitted in an extortion case.

Can’t stop construction, people should ‘compromise and sacrifice’ for ‘essential’ Metro: Bombay HC

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Bombay High Court today said it cannot put a permanent stop to the Metro III project as it is essential for decongestion of roads and hence people should “compromise and sacrifice” and put up with the problems created due to the construction work.A division bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice NM Jamdar was hearing a bunch of petitions claiming that the construction activity for the project was resulting in noise pollution in the areas concerned. Last month, the court had refused to allow the Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation Limited (MMRCL) the use of heavy machinery or transportation vehicles at night for the Metro III line work. The MMRCL had sought the court’s permission to bring heavy vehicles to construction sites in South Mumbai “during the night hours to transport construction material and debris”.Advocate General Ashutosh Kumbakoni today sought that the court reconsider the issue and said, “The nature of machinery, equipment and material that needs to be brought in are heavy and large. Traffic needs to be stopped for these to be transported. It would not be proper if traffic is stopped during day time and hence it needs to be done at night.” The court then said it was aware of the authority’s anxiety and concern to complete the project and directed the MMRCL to file an affidavit giving details of what work needs to be carried out during night time and the time schedule for the same. “We are aware of your concern and anxiety. But at the same time we cannot overlook everything. You (MMRCL) cannot carry on work each night for a whole year. There are school and college children who have to prepare for exams,” Chief Justice Chellur said.”We understand that there has to be compromise and sacrifice by people too. We cannot permanently stop the project. There needs to be a balance. We cannot stop development. This project will decongest roads and will benefit everyone. Extreme sensitivity and arbitrariness is also not correct,” she said. The bench has now posted the petitions for hearing tomorrow by when the MMRCL will have to submit its affidavit.The 33-kilometre Colaba-Bandra-SEEPZ Metro line III project is part of the Metro system which will connect the Cuffe Parade business district in south Mumbai to SEEPZ in the city’s north-central suburb. In August this year, acting on the above petitions, the court had restrained MMRCL from carrying out any construction or ancillary work on the Metro III line between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m.

Homebuyers up in arms against Powai builder

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>On Saturday a bunch of homebuyers and investors of JVPD Properties Private Limited’s Powai project approached the Economic Offence Wing alleging that the money they paid to the developer has been grossly misappropriated and siphoned away.Seema Saini, one such victim, said the allotment letter categorically read that it was agreed that if the developer doesn’t obtain the requisite clearances from the Municipal Corporation for construction on the plot within a period of nine months plus a grace period of three months, then one can claim refund from the developer of the amount paid to him plus an interest of 15 per cent per annum. The allotment letter is dated March 2014 but Saini alleged that since nothing has progressed on that front, she along with other affected buyers decided to approach the cops.The project is named Bhagtani Serenity and according to Saini around 25 victims have come together so far. They have allegedly paid between Rs 20 lakh to 1 crore each. They even alleged that no work has begun on the land where the building was to be built.When contacted, Diipesh Bhagtani, director, JVPD Properties Private Ltd, said, “The project Serenity is to be built in two phases. We have already received IOD & CC for the A building in the first phase and have started work for the same. We have so far cancelled and refunded the money to atleast 50 investors with 15 per cent interest. The project is also registered with RERA for the approvals that we have received. We are not aware of any complaints by the investors.”

Bandra Fort soon to be rid of encroachers

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Bandra Fort beautification project is gathering steam as the H-West ward `of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) served notices to 171 hutments who have encroached on the plot adjoining the fort. The notices were served last week under Section 314 of the Mumbai Municipal Corporation Act and the ward officials have asked the encroachers to provide eligibility documents by October 9.”If eligibility is proved, an alternate accommodation plan will be given to the encroachers while the rest will be demolished,” said Assistant Municipal Commissioner, Sharad Ughade. The ward recently demolished 51 illegal structures in the area.Two adjoining plots owned by the BMC with a combined area of 25,000 sq mt will be utilised in the project. Of the two plots, one has been developed as a garden and adopted by the Residents’ Trust while the other plot is partly encroached. The BMC can start the project once the plot is free of all encroachments.Meanwhile, the municipal architect Surendra Borale has asked consultant Hafeez Contractor to submit the project’s final design plan in 15 days. Borale said, “I have received the standing committee resolution to appoint the consultant and in a day or two we will ask him to submit a final design plan in 15 days after which the design plan will be sent to Maharashtra Coastal Zone Management Authority (MCZMA) for their final approval”.DNA had reported on July 3 that MCZMA has given its in-principle approval to the project and asked BMC to use only natural materials for the development.Revamp planThe beautification plan includes a promenade designed in the form of waves and a cycling track connecting the Bandra Fort to the Bandra-Worli Sea Link.

186 ultrasound machines tampered with: Report

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Active trackers, installed in ultrasound machines across the state are being tampered with for performing illegal sex determination of foetus, a study reveals. Notably, these trackers were installed in ultrasound machines on high court orders to put a check on illegal sex determination and illegal abortion largely conducted with an intention of female foeticide.The study done by Rajan Chaudhary of Shikshit Rozgar Kendra Prabandhak Samiti(SRKPS), an NGO working with state PCPNDT cell to put a check on illegal sex determination of foetus, reveals that at least 186 sonography centres in the state are tampering with active tracker attached with ultrasound machine at respective centres. “It was found during the examination of the ultrasound machine, seized in recent decoy operation conducted by state PCPNDT cell in Sikar, that the accused doctor activated the machine on August 29 and 31 and conducted ultrasound test for sonography.But technical team found no data available in active tracker for both the days,”Chaudhary told DNA. “The technical team found in its probe that the accused had tampered the tracker to detach it from the machine,” he added.It is worth mentioning that Rajasthan High Court had directed all sonography centres to install active tracker in ultrasound machine with a provision of legal action against the centre owner for any type of tampering.“It is a contempt of court order but a number of registered sonography centres are tampering with active tracker.As per our study, 186 doctors in the state are illegally performing ultrasound test for sex determination of foetus after tampering with the active tracker,”said Chaudhary.We have passed on the information to state appropriate authority (PCPNDT) in a written letter, asking prompt action against the sonography centres indulged in tampering with active tracker. We have also demanded for transparent audit of data found in active trackers,” said Chaudhary. “With the involvement of district appropriate authority, state cell used to conduct data audit of active trackers randomly. We have sought the list of suspected sonography centres and definitely will take appropriate and effective action in this matter,”Raghuvir Singh, Project Director, PCPNDT told DNA.

Coastal Road Project’s Phase 1 work to face delays

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Work on the state government’s Coastal Road Project’s Phase 1 — from Princess Street to Worli Sea Face — is set to miss the October 31 deadline, for giving the work order, announced by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis. The civic body has extended the time for bids submission to October 31, and financial bids will be opened on December 4.The BMC, which is heading the project, had called for proposal requests from 13 qualified firms. However, the bidders have submitted 774 queries and the civic officials need time to answer them. The work is now expected to start by February.BMC officials said that out of the 774 queries, 50 per cent are contractual, 20 per cent related to commercial items, 25 per cent are technical and 5 per cent are related to pricing, goods and services tax and duties.Sanjay Mukherjee, Additional Municipal Commissioner said, “It’s the first project of its kind undertaken by the corporation. Despite being such a huge project, we have very few queries related to pricing and GST. Although the work may start a little late, the response from bidders is very positive.”

Students help AAI solve toll booth woes

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Airports Authority of India has roped in students from the HL College of Commerce to monitor and collect data from the toll booth near the city’s airports.A team of seven students, which was deployed at the toll booth from Thursday midnight, will keep a record of the number and types of vehicles passing by.”We have two projects related to the airport. In the toll booth project, the airports’ authority wants to ascertain what types of vehicles come to airport and the time taken at the booth,” said Dr Parag Shah, professor of Statistics, HL College of Commerce.”Depending on the data, different booths might be created for private and public vehicles. Seven students will work on the project for 48 hours in different shifts. They have been given shifts of 12 hours and after the project, we will collect an extensive data and submit to airport officials,” he added.”Once this project is over, the students will make an analysis of passengers flying with different airline companies, their preferences and reasons for choosing a particular airline. The project will start in October and we will cover the domestic and international airport,” he added.STUDENTS AT WORKAirports Authority of India has roped in students from HL College of Commerce
The team of seven students will monitor and collect data from the toll booths near the city’s airports

Bihar: Rs 389 crore dam collapses a day before inauguration

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In a shocking turn of events, the 389.31 crore worth Gateshwar Panth Canal Project, which was all set to be inaugurated by Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, suffered a major blow as a part of the dam collapsed just 24 hours before the inaugural ceremony.Stirring the administrative head, Minister of Water Resources, Lallan Singh said, “The dam broke due to release of water in full capacity. The incident has not caused any damage to the newly constructed part of the project.”Due to unfortunate accident, the inauguration of the dam has been cancelled.It is said, the Bateshwarasthan Ganga Pump Canal Project was prepared by the government under the irrigation scheme at Kahalgaon in Bhagalpur. Rs. 389.31 crore was spent on this scheme.The Gateshwar Panth Canal Project is told to be very old and took a long time to complete the project.The main purpose of making the dam was to collect water in the canal, so that the farmers would not have to face any problem.The collapsing has created a frantic ambience. Several reports of water logging have been identified and water can be seen entering the city, penetrating many homes of low-lying areas.As soon as the information about the dam broke, the officials concerned immediately reached the spot.Jharkhand was also to be benefited from this project. Through this project, the irrigation facility would have been available in 18620 hectares in Bhagalpur and 22658 hectares in Godda district of Jharkhand.Initially, this was just 13.88 crore plan but in January 1977, the Planning Commission had approved the scheme at a cost of Rs 13.88 crore. (ANI)Ends RT/MMNNNNANI

Railways to use tablets for feedback

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In a move to gauge passenger satisfaction of those travelling by Rajdhani and Shatabdi trains, next week onwards, railway staff will hand over tablets to passengers in AC coaches of these trains. The passengers will be asked to key in their ratings on ten parametres, including the quality of linen provided, catering, toilets, and staff behaviour. This comes at a time when the newly-appointed Railway Minister Piyush Goyal is expected to announce the best trains as part of ‘Project Swarn’ on September 25.The Railway Board has been working on improving passenger experience under ‘Project Swarn’, wherein they will be certifying Rajdhani and Shatabdi trains on 29 different routes across Indian Railways. Of these, there are 14 routes on which Rajdhani runs and 15 routes where Shatabdi trains ply everyday. There are three routes of Rajdhani and one route of Shatabdi operated by Western Railway and one route of Shatabdi run by Central Railway under this project.A part of ‘Project Swarn’, the 10 parametres are based on what directly affect passengers, which will be monitored through the ratings received on the tablets. These factors are coach interiors, toilets, onboard cleanliness, punctuality, catering, linen, staff behaviour, security, onboard entertainment, and real-time feedback.IRCTC officials confirmed they have procured around 25 tablets, which will be used by their staff to seek feedback from passengers, starting next week. “The feedback will upload automatically on our system. This will help us focus on areas of improvement,” said MP Mall, acting Chairman and Managing Director, IRCTC.The passengers can rate between one to five points. If the rating is less than three points, there shall be sub-questions for passengers to elaborate on the scopes of improvement.The Railway Board has already created nine teams, with two members each, who have been overseeing these factors since June. These teams are in touch with the 17 railway zones, where more officials have been appointed for keeping a tab on these parametres. Sources said that based on the observations of these teams, a maximum amount of Rs 50 lakh can be spent on renovating a single rake.”We will be certifying the best train routes as Gold Standard, and this will most likely be announced by the Railway Minister on September 25,” said a Railway board official.

PM Narendra Modi to inaugurate world’s second biggest dam on his birthday: 5 facts about Sardar Sarovar Dam

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>On Sunday, September 17, India will get its biggest dam ever made. Sardar Sarovar Dam, the project that has been forever in controversy, will be inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to mark his 67th birthday.Here are top 5 facts about Sardar Sarovar Dam:Here are top 5 facts about Sardar Sarovar Dam:1: The foundation stone of the Sardar Sarovar Dam was laid by India’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru on April 5, 1961. It is the second biggest dam in the world after Grand Coulee Dam in the US.2: There are 30 gates of the dam. Each gate of Sardar Sarovar Dam weighs over 450 tonnes and it takes one hour to close them.3: The dam has already earned Rs 16,000 crore, which is more than double the cost of the mega structure.4: The current height of the dam is 138 metres that makes it the biggest structure ever made in the country. The Narmada Control Authority had ordered the gates of the Sardar Sarovar Project be shut on June 16. The gates of the country’s highest dam were closed the following day.5: The dam has storage capacity of 4.73 million cubic metres. The construction of the dam was not exactly a smooth journey. In 1985, the protests by Medha Patkar and other activists slowed down the constcrution.

Mumbai Trans-Harbour Link: MMRDA opens bids for constructing 22-kilometre link

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) on Friday said that it has opened the financial bids for the third package of construction for 22-km-long Mumbai Trans Harbour Link (MTHL). Larsen & Toubro was found to be the lowest bidder for the third package of MTHL after quoting 22.45% below the estimated Rs 1,300 crore.Earlier, on Thursday MMRDA had opened financial bids for the remaining two packages wherein the bidders had quoted about 15 per cent more than the estimated of Rs 11,500 crore.“Financial bid for third package of MTHL was opened today in which L&T is the lowest with 22.45 per cent below,” UPS Madan, Metropolitan Commissioner, MMRDA, told DNA on Friday.The MMRDA had estimated Rs 12,800 crore for the civil construction out of the total cost of Rs 17,800 crore for the project. However, bidders for two out of the total three packages, in which the project was divided, have quoted 15 per cent more than the estimations, and for the third package L&T has quoted, below the estimated.Further, two joint ventures namely L&T with IHI Japan, and Tata Projects with Daewoo Korea for the first two packages, and L&T in the third package have been shortlisted for the construction of MTHL.The Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) is funding almost 85 per cent of the project cost of MTHL. Due to this, JICA’s no objection certificate (NOC) would be required considering it is funding the project.Ever since MTHL was proposed back in 1980’s the project cost has increased more than 350%. In 2005, the cost was estimated at Rs 4,000 crore and the same was estimated to be Rs 17,800 crore in 2016. But now after the quotations being higher than estimations, the construction cost might reach upto Rs 20,000 crore.MMRDA had in January 2017, announced that it had short listed in all 29 contractors for the 3 packages of the 22-km long MTHL project. This includes seven contractors each for the first two packages and 15 for the third package.

Bhubaneswar flyover collapse: One engineer arrested, case filed against four others

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>An engineer was arrested in connection with the collapse of an under-construction flyover here that left a man dead and 11 others injured, the police said.Police have also registered a case against four others.Deputy Executive Engineer in the Works Department of the state government, Bansidhar Praharaj, has been arrested in connection with the incident that took place near Bomikhal yesterday, Commissioner of Police Y B Khurania said.A case has been registered against Praharaj, Assistant Engineer Kishore Rout and Directors of Panda Infra Project, which was executing the construction work of the bridge, Khurania said.Efforts are on to trace the four others against whom the case has been registered, and if necessary, police may issue a look-out notice, he said.Those named in the case have been booked under different sections of the IPC, including Section 304 (punishment for culpable homicide not amounting to murder), at Laxmisagar police station, police said.The police also booked them under Sections 337 of IPC (causing hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others), 338 (causing grievous hurt) and 34 (when a criminal act is done by several persons), they said.While Prahjaraj and Rout were suspended soon after the mishap, Executive Engineer Dukhabandhu Behera was also placed under suspension later for prima facie lapses, a senior official said.A high-level probe has been launched into the incident by a committee comprising Chief Engineer (Designs) and Chief Engineer (Roads), Works Department Secretary N K Pradhan told reporters.The committee has been asked to submit its report within a week, he said.Stern action would be taken against those found guilty, he said, adding, that the project was under the Roads and Buildings (R & B) Division-4.A 39-year-old businessman was killed and 11 others were injured after a portion of the under-construction flyover caved in.Opposition parties have blamed the BJD government for the mishap and targeted Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, who is also in charge of the Works Department.

Govt to hold contest to measure impact and quality of smart city projects

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The ministry of housing and urban affairs is set to make states and union territories compete once again for a total prize money of Rs 50 lakh, in a contest organized to assess the quality and impact of ongoing smart city projects.According to sources, the ministry has already circulated a concept note and guidelines on the contest to all states and UTs. Aimed at rewarding cities, projects and innovative ideas promoting Smart City Mission goals, all projects to be completed by April 1, 2018, will be eligible for participation, a senior official said.Awards in nine categories including project awards, innovative idea, and city will be presented on June 25 next year marking the third anniversary of the launch of Smart City Mission, an official said.Impact, innovation, and scalability in other areas of the city will comprise the evaluation criteria.Under the Project Awards category, categories such as Improving Governance, Social Aspects, Culture and Economy, Environment Impact, Transportation and Mobility and Water and Sanitation would be awarded excellence. Best performers in each of these nine categories will be awarded Rs5 lakh each and a scroll.Ninety cities have so far been identified so far under the Smart Cities Mission and an investment of Rs 1.91 lakh crore has been proposed by the cities.The first batch of 20 smart cities was announced in January last year, followed by another 13 through in May last year, 27 cities in September last year and another 30 cities in June this year.

Centre urged to start ferry service

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>After expressing apprehensions over the feasibility of plans for water transport between Nariman Point and Borivali in Gorai, the state government through the Maharashtra Maritime Board (MMB) has sent a proposal to the Central government to go ahead and execute the project on their own.Atul Patne, Chief Executive Officer, MMB, told DNA, “We have sent the proposal to the Ministry of Shipping for executing the water transport project after we were asked by the Centre.”The MMB had, earlier this year, floated bids seeking expression of interest (EOI) from companies for the water passenger transport service between Nariman Point and Gorai in Borivli. However, MMB later said that the project may not be technically and financially feasible.Speaking on the challenges, a senior MMB official, said, “If we talk of water transport connectivity, we will need a number of jetties between Nariman Point and Borivli to make the project financially viable and allow for more citizens to have access to the facility.”The official added, “But having jetties at every location is not possible due to the cost factors involved and need for surplus infrastructure.”Last month, the state government had come under flak after Union Minister Nitin Gadkari had slammed the Maharashtra government’s bureaucracy for delaying the water transport project. Gadkari had told DNA on August 8, “I was informed about these apprehensions. If the state government does not find the project feasible, we will develop a feasible model for them.Estimated at a cost Rs 2,000, the water transport project between Nariman Point and Gorai is also the cheapest mass transportation project when compared with other projects that connect Island city with western suburbs.AT A GLANCEWater transport services have been proposed between several locations like Nariman Point and Gorai in Borivli, Thane and Navi Mumbai since the late 1990s
However, all these projects have been only on paper from past several years or at execution stage
This was one of the reasons Gadkari had publicly criticised the state government for delaying it and said the Centre could help them

NTCA opposes plan to subsume under bigger wildlife body

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) has strongly opposed a proposal to subsume itself and its flagship Project Tiger scheme under the ambit of an overarching National Wildlife Conservation Authority (NWCA) aimed at conservation of the habitats of all animals.An evaluation committee of the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) had recommended the idea of NWCA last year in a report on the performance of 12 Plan schemes. Following NTCA’s opposition to the proposal, the ministry has currently shelved the plan, top officials said.Following a review of NTCA’s fund allocation, habitat and conservation issues, the ministry’s evaluation committee, headed by senior economic adviser Anandi Subramanian, had recommended that NTCA should be renamed NWCA to widen its scope and include all wildlife and habitat conservation schemes under it. “Such convergence will avoid pitfalls associated with the current delineation of activities under each scheme,” the evaluation committee had said.Expressing its disagreement with the recommendations, the NTCA has said that instead of diluting an existing “success story”, the ministry needs to strengthen other wildlife schemes. The new proposal, it said, would be a generalised approach and would not make any impact with regard to tigers, as it stems from an administrative and economic point of view.”The species specific approach of Project Tiger is highly technical and has stood the test of time. This successful, pioneering venture should be retained as such without its merger with any other scheme,” the NTCA said. It suggested that rather than a unified authority, there is a need for projects to conserve flagship species from other habitats, such as Project Lion and Project Snow Leopard.

Ken-Betwa river linking: Nitin Gadkari to sit down with Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Adityanath to break deadlock

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The resolution of a deadlock between Madhya Pradesh government and Centre on the Ken- Betwa river linking project over MP’s fresh demands to widen the scope of the project is going to be the foremost priorities of Nitin Gadkari, who took charge of Ministry of Water Resources (MoWR) from Uma Bharti on Monday. Gadkari is going to soon sit down with Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan and Uttar Pradesh CM Yogi Adityanath to sort out the impasse over the project, highly placed sources said.At the heart of the impasse is Madhya Pradesh government’s decision to withhold their no-objection certificate (NOC), which is mandatory for the project work to begin. The Chouhan-led MP government wants MoWR to include Kotha barrage, Lower Orr and Bina complex irrigation projects in Phase-I of the Ken-Betwa link. As per the original plans of the National Water Development Agency, these projects will be executed in Phase-II of the interlinking of rivers. Additionally, the MP government has also demanded a reworking of the original 2005 water sharing agreement with UP.The MP government escalated the issue and wrote to the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) to consider their demands. “The demand to include projects from a later stage in Phase-I will upset the entire project as the primary phase itself has not taken off. These projects are also yet to be appraised for central clearances,”sources from MoWR said.Besides the pending NOC from MP, the project has not received the final environmental clearance and clearance for the forest diversion. Also, the wildlife clearance granted by the National Board for Wildlife is being scrutinized by the Supreme Court’s Centrally Empowered Committee, sources said. Conceived under the Atal Bihari Vajpayee-led NDA-I government, the Rs.18,000 crore Ken-Betwa river linking project aims to transfer water from the Ken river basin in Madhya Pradesh to Betwa river basin in Bundelkhand, Uttar Pradesh for irrigating over 6 lakh hectares of farmland. The project has faced bitter criticism from country’s leading environmentalists and even hydrologists as the project involves construction of Daudham dam inside the core area of Panna Tiger reserve. A total of nearly 10,000 hectares of forest would be lost including over 5,000 hectares from Panna tiger reserve core area.The tiger reserve is home to more than 30 tigers, leopards, sloth bears, endangered vultures and a dense forest.

Soon, commuters on the Harbour line to get new trains

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Ask anyone who takes trains on the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT)-Panvel line, and chances are they will complain about the rickety rakes. However, DNA has come to know that in July, then Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu had approved production of Electric Multiple Units (EMUs) or new trains for the much-neglected Harbour and Trans Harbour lines. This will be a boon for the 13 lakh-odd daily commuters taking these trains daily.These coaches will also serve Western and Central Railways.Sources said that till March 2018, the Railway Board had approved manufacture of 129 coaches for Harbour and Trans Harbour lines. These are the coaches that were to be procured under MUTP-2 (Mumbai Urban Transport Project-2). The overall augmentation would be 9-car to 12-car rakes. Officials from Central Railways said that these coaches were supposed to come more than a year back, but it has been delayed for long.”We were to procure additional coaches for the Harbour line, which has been stuck for long. This project has now got the approval and delivery will begin soon, now that it is part of a production plan,” said a CR official.Also, 324 additional EMU coaches will be manufactured, which will be distributed in Mumbai, Chennai, Delhi and Kolkata for their suburban railway systems. All will be manufactured by the Integral Coach Factory in Chennai.Sources said that this is not just for this financial year but also for the next two.Senior railway officials said that a detailed production plan for these rakes has been made where various types of coaches will be manufactured. In 2018-19, they will manufacture 156 coaches that will be operated on the Harbour and Thane-Vashi Trans-harbour line. Sources said that these coaches will also be operated in corridors connecting as far as Uran, for which work is underway.They will also manufacture 552 EMU coaches during this period and in 2019-20, the railway production units will manufacture 360 EMU coaches that will be distributed in the four metropolitan cities.

Vasundhara Raje’s dream refinery in pipeline, may take 5 years to realise

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The dream project of the Vasundhara Raje’s government – the joint venture HPCL Rajasthan Refinery Ltd – will take four to five years to be completed. The state government has allotted 4,800 acres of land at Pachpadra in Barmer district for the refinery. The project was conceived in 2013-14.Petroleum & natural gas minister Dharmendra Pradhan has hinted that a time line of four to five years is required for setting up the refinery. But much time would be saved as no land acquisition would be required for the project and the state government is ready to provide 4,800 acres of land. The water for the project would be sourced from the Indira Gandhi Canal through pipelines.The first task before starting the work for setting up the refinery will be the environment clearance from the union ministry of environment and forest as the location of the proposed refinery comes within the proximity of the Pachpadra Lake, which is one of the oldest salt collection area. The actual site of the refinery is about 12 to 15km from Pachpadra city and the other big town near the refinery is Balotra.The issue of the land cost of 4,800 acres which the state government is going to provide for the project is to be mutually discussed between the state government and the Hindustan Petroleum. The state will determine the current price of the land and would insist on taking the land cost as part of its equity. As the new MoU has been signed, these issues would come up for further discussions in future meetings. Rajasthan State Petroleum Corporation (RSPC), a subsidiary of Rajasthan State Mines & Minerals Ltd (RSMML), will be the nodal agency for the state government that would work with the HPCL. The RSPC shall prepare the roadmap for the refinery.The Rs 43,129 crore project’s progress will depend on the proposed amalgamation of the HPCL with the Oil & Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC), another Union government undertaking. The Union government’s department of disinvestment has issued a cabinet note to this effect and the Prime Minister’s office is keen to effect the amalgamation to create a huge energy PSU on the global scale..The Union government is said to be planning to combine HPCL with ONGC by selling its 51.1 percent stake in the former to the latter for about Rs 29,000 crore. This would need the approval of the cabinet.Once the amalgamation is approved, the ministry of petroleum and natural gas will have to decide whether to adopt a subsidiary model for combining the two oil PSUs instead of merging the companies, making the ONGC, the parent company and the HPCL as the subsidiary of the ONGC.Thus, the progress of the refinery will depend a lot on the major decisions that would be taken by the oil and gas ministry on the functioning of the two PSUs after the amalgamation process is completed.

DNA Exclusive: Why Ranthambhore is losing its big cats

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Little over a decade has passed since Sariska Tiger Reserve in Alwar district of Rajasthan lost all its tigers to poaching. The horrific times for wildlife conservation are still etched in the memories of wildlife lovers. Major accomplishments have been achieved in the field of wildlife conservation since then, but now Ranthambhore Tiger Reserve seems to be facing a similar threat.A forest department document in possession of DNA reveals that ten tigers are missing from the park. What’s more, the most recent camera trap image of one of the tigers is from January 2015, nearly two and a half years back. Considering the long time-gap between their disappearance and now, the department is running an exercise in removing them from its list of tigers at Ranthambhore. And the catch is, the officials don’t even know what fate befell these big cats.”We are running an exercise to eliminate those tigers from the list that have not been sighted for the past several years. Their carcasses have not been recovered, and thus they should be struck out from out lists,” said YK Sahu, Conservator of Forest and Field Director of Ranthambore Tiger Project.The question is, how can a tiger — the mainstay of tourism in Ranthambhore — disappear without a trace, and the forest department keeps scratching its head. Interestingly, even the Field Director agreed that the tigers move out in the periphery areas where they are lost.The document, undersigned by Sahu, states that territorial adjustments keep happening, and due to the elusive behavior of tigers and remoteness of areas in which they make territories, they cannot be tracked every time.

Dravyavati riverfront to have track for cycling buffs

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Cycling enthusiasts of the city will soon be relieved of trouble to travel to city outskirts in pursuit of pollution free cycling track. On completion, the Dravyavati river front will have for them a nearly 40km corridor on either side of the water body. The corridor will be exclusive for pedestrians and cyclists assuring a pollution free ride and a scenic background. At a review meeting of the project held at Jaipur Development Authority (JDA) on Friday, the consultancy firm hired for development of the riverfront was instructed by development commissioner Vaibhav Galriya regarding development of the corridor. According to the authority officials, the pedestrian walkway and cycling track will be combined to provide a unique experience to the visitors. Dravyawati river front development project is among the projects which is a top priority for the chief minister and it’s on her directions that the review meetings are being held on regular basis to ensure that the project is completed by August 2018. Cycling has been a fast rising trend in the city. However, most of the cycling enthusiasts often have to travel out of the urban area in search of roads that are free of fast moving vehicles. The Dravyavati project spreading across a length of 47km will offer multiple entry and exit points to the cyclists to arrive and leave the cycling track as per their convenience. “The proposed track will be four-metre wide and will have long and uninterrupted stretch except for a few locations where there are dams and bridges,” said a JDA officer.The proposed track at Dravyavati river front will not only be free from motorised vehicles it will also be surrounded by more than 16,000 trees and a green area of nearly 65,000 square metres. A wall along the riverfront will also keep the stray animals and other hindrance away. However, the space constraint along the riverside has left little scope for development of other facilities.40km corridorThe Dravyavati river front will have a nearly 40km corridor on either side of the water body. The corridor will be exclusive for pedestrians and cyclists assuring a pollution free ride and a scenic background.The Dravyavati project spreading across a length of 47km will offer multiple entry and exit points to the cyclists.The project is among the projects which is a top priority for the CM and review meetings are being held on regular basis to ensure that the project is completed by August 2018.

Nilambur-Nanjangud rail line: Ker seeks consensus with K’taka

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>: Kerala government was keen to implement Nilambur-Nanjangud railway line, being opposed by Karnataka, and wanted to reach a consensus with the neighbouring state, Public Works Minister G Sudhakaran said today. Replying to a submission in the state assembly, he said Karnataka was opposing the proposed railway line which seeks to connect Nilambur in Kerala and Nanjangud in the neighbouring state on the ground that it passed through Bandipur tiger reserve. A long-pending demand of local people in northern part of Kerala, the proposed railway line is planned between Nilambur in Malappuram district and Nanjangud. “The Karnataka government is opposing the project. But, Kerala is very keen on implementing the railway line. We have to sort out the issues and explore an alternative alignment,” he said. The minister said Kerala government was ready to implement the project and funds were not a hurdle. Taking up the issue, I C Balakrishnan (Congress) wanted the state government to expedite the procedures to implement the railway line. A total of Rs eight crore had been allotted for the project after the LDF government came to power last year, of which Rs two crore had been granted as an initial instalment, he said. “But, no other steps have been taken after that. The railway line is a long-pending demand of local people,” Balakrishnan said.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

CM bats for Athirapally hydel project

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Amid controversy over the implementation of the controversial Athirappally hydel project, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan today batted for it but maintained that government would strive for a consensus before going ahead. “The 163 MW project has been conceived in such a way that the water flow to the famous Athirappally waterfalls and also from the proposed dam to powerhouse would not be affected in any manner,” Vijayan said in the state assembly while replying to a calling attention on the issue. “Not a drop of water will go waste with the project,” he said. The project is planned in Chalakudy river in Thrissur district. Steps for rehabilitation of tribals living in the upper vicinity of the project area have also been taken into consideration while preparing the project report, he said adding there was no habitation in the proposed project site. The Central Environmental Appraisal Committee has expressed satisfaction on the recommendations of the Environment Impact Assessment report on the project, he said. However, with environmental outfits and some political parties expressing objection to the project, government is trying for a consensus by protecting state’s interests, he said. Vijayan also informed the House that the project has received all legal clearance, including Economic and Technical from the Central Electricity Authority. Raising the issue, P T Thomas (Cong) wanted the LDF government to scrap the project as it would adversely affect the environment and bio-diversity of the area. Referring to recent reports that government had started work on the project by setting up transformers in the area, Thomas said it was not a project that has to be started with “secrecy.” Local people were told that the transformers were to provide electricity for a crematorium in the area, he said and wanted government to make its stand clear on the project. Congress leadership in the state was also divided over the issue as former chief minister Oommen Chandy had stated that a consensus has to be arrived at over the project while Opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala had wanted the government to drop the project. The previous UDF government headed by Chandy had written to the Centre urging it to implement the project, holding that the project when commissioned would benefit the state. The project came into focus recently after power minister M M Mani had said that preliminary works on the project had begun. Reports that the Kerala State Electricity Board had put up a transformer in the project area fuelled speculation that the government was going ahead with the project despite protests from environmentalists. The project was mooted years ago, but ran into trouble and was kept in abeyance by successive governments due to protests from local people and environmentalists.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Indian company wins tender to construct CASA-1000 power project

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> An Indian company has won the tender for construction of 1000 Electricity Transmission and Trade Project for Central Asia and South Asia (CASA). As per Tolo News, the company, which has won the tender Afghanistan?s Ministry of Water and Energy (MoWE), said it will complete the construction of the project in three years. The construction phase of the project will cost around USD 404 million, of which 80 percent will be funded by the World Bank and the remaining 20 percent will be paid by the Afghan government, Afghanistan?s energy and water minister Abdul Basir Azimi said. ?Insecurity is the biggest obstacle on the way of investments and economic growth in the country. If government can eradicate insecurity, especially on the route of CASA-1000, then we will benefit from the project,? Nabi Sadat, an economic affairs analyst said This project was inaugurated last year by the Central Asian state leaders in Tajikistan. The $1.2 billion, 750-kilometre-long transmission line expected to be complete by 2018 will allow Pakistan to import electricity from Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan via Afghanistan to minimise its electricity shortage. Pakistan will reportedly consume about 1,000MW of the exported energy while 300MW will be used by Afghanistan. Since 2005, Pakistan, Afghanistan, the Kyrgyz Republic and Tajikistan have been pursuing the development of electricity-trading arrangements and the establishment of the Casa Regional Energy Market (CASAREM). Afghanistan has given a sovereign guarantee to protect the section of the transmission line passing through it. The Casa-1000 project will include a 750km high voltage direct current (DC) transmission system between Tajikistan and Pakistan via Afghanistan, together with associated converter stations at Sangtuda (1,300MW), Kabul (300MW) and Peshawar (1,300MW). The 477km 500kV alternating current facility will run between the Kyrgyz Republic (Datka) and Tajikistan (Khoujand).(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

‘Team Rajasthan’ working to eliminate inequality: Raje

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje today said that ‘Team Rajasthan’ was working day and night to eliminate the socio-economic inequality and discrimination in the society. In her Independence Day address at the SMS Stadium here, she said that “absolute freedom” is possible only when people progress, medical treatment is provided at no cost, there are employment opportunities and everyone gets justice. Taking inspiration from freedom fighters, “New Rajasthan” is moving towards becoming a prosperous society, which is free of corruption, racism, foeticide, illiteracy and poverty, the chief minister said. Raje called upon the youth to join politics with positive mindset, true loyalty and passion to make Rajasthan a leading state of the nation. She urged the people of the state to take active part in the development of the country and the state. “We are all united to work towards the reform of India and by 2022 free the country from the evils such as corruption, terrorism, communalism, poverty and casteism,” Raje said. She claimed that 1.08 lakh people had got jobs in the government sector and 11 lakh in the private sector through skill development. “Rajasthan today is fast becoming a digital state and the digi-fest will be organised in various cities of the state, Raje said, adding that the fest will start in Kota on August 17. “Team Rajasthan is working towards economic and social freedom and gradually these are coming true under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi,” the chief minister said. On the occasion, she spoke on the Dravyavati River Rejuvenation Project, the tribal art museum and the street food corners being developed in Jaipur. The leopard safari in Jhalana and the lion safari in Nahargarh forest reserve will start soon, she said, adding that the ring road project in the state capital will also be completed in her tenure. Raje also inaugurated the Rajasthan Contact Helpline ‘181’ and said that the state government has given good governance and the helpline is a step forward for satisfactory resolution of problems of the people.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

‘Gaj Yatra’ to secure elephant corridors launched in Mumbai

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In a bid to raise awareness about the shrinking space for wild elephants in the country, a ‘Gaj Yatra’ campaign has been launched in Mumbai. The campaign was yesterday launched by NGO Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) at the Siddhivinayak temple in Prabhadevi area where Railways Minister Suresh Prabhu was present. The ‘gaj yatra’, partnered by the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), will take the form of a roadshow that will move through 12 elephant range states over the next 15 months, with elephant-sized artworks created by local artists and craftsmen as the centrepiece, a statement issued by the trust said. Besides, ‘gaj mahotsav’ will be organised at different venues along the way, with concerts, parades, street plays and activities for children in particular. On the occasion, noted actor and WTI’s brand ambassador Dia Mirza said that for the gaj yatra to succeed, it must be a people’s movement. “I hope that over the next 15 months it will capture the country’s imagination, corporate India and people to come together and help secure 101 corridors for India’s wild elephants,” she said. India has about 30,000 wild elephants, which constitute over 50 per cent of the species’ estimated global population, the release said. The growing resource needs of India’s human population have led to the destruction and fragmentation of wild habitats across the country, depleting the area available for elephants to roam and causing the loss of their traditional migratory paths, it said. Elephant corridors are vital natural habitat linkages that enable the pachyderms and other wildlife animals to move through the degraded habitats lying between larger protected forests freely, without being disturbed by humans, it said. WTI has been working with the Government of India’s Project Elephant, state forest departments, and national and global NGOs to secure and protect the country’s 101 identified and mapped elephant corridors, the release said. Mumbai Mayor Vishwanath Mahadeshwar and WTI CEO Vivek Menon were also present at the campaign launch.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Elephant and tiger attacks highlight India’s wildlife conflict

As conservation efforts bear fruit, people are increasingly in conflict with tigers and elephants.

Polavaram project will change the economic scenario of Andhra-Naidu

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu on Monday said Polavaram project would change the economic scenario of the state. He was speaking after handing over over appointment letters to 518 assistant executive engineers at the project site on Monday with an aim to provide water security to people of the regions in the state. Naidu also informed that the project needs around Rs. 50,000 crore for completion and Rs. 12000 crore has been spent so far. He exhorted the young engineers to work hard with a commitment to develop the state as number one in the world by 2050. Naidu personally inspected the progress of ongoing works at the project 18 times so far. A target was set to supply water through gravity by 2018 and complete the project by 2019. The state government completed the Pattiseema Village lift irrigation in a record time and lifted 29 thousand million cubic feet of Godavari water to save the crops in Krishna delta. The ongoing 25 irrigation projects in the state would be completed in 3 months. Ends VN/HB NNNN ANI(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

United by Aadhaar: When UID helped reunite a mentally-ill child with his family

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A mentally challenged teenager from Panipat in Haryana who had gone missing in 2015 has been reunited with his family thanks to the Aadhaar card. The case happened during an Aadhaar enrolment that happened at a child welfare home when authorities tried taking his biometrics, they found he was already part of the system.Sanjay Dubey, Coordinator Salaam Baalak Trust told Times of India: “Gaurav was transferred here because Palna takes care of children only up to the age of eight. During routine medical and psychoanalysis tests it was revealed that the child was suffering from ADSP (Alzheimer’s Disease Sequencing Project). And as such he could remember nothing but the names of his parents and himself.””During the biometric assertions, the credentials of the boy matched with that of his parents’ in Panipat. Following that, his family was called to the national capital leading to the reunion of the boy with his parents,” he added. Thanks to Aadhaar, the teenager was reunited with his parents in Haryana’s Panipat. His father Vikas remembered losing Gaurav on a bleak Sunday in 2015 and how they couldn’t find him despite putting out ads, and reporting it to the local police station.He added: “Despite several TV, newspaper ads and everything we were not able to find our son. But we never lost hope and now thanks to Aadhaar we got our elder son back.” While the debate continues around Aadhaar and its supposed breach of privacy, even the most hardened anti-Aadhaar activist will have to admit that the Unique Identification system definitely has up sides.

Ecologists want BMC to act fast to secure weak tree bases in Aarey

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Worried over losing the famous Aarey Milk Colony tree avenue to rapid soil erosion, environmentalists cautioned the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) against unscientific tree trimming and demanded that the process to reinforce tree bases be initiated at the earliest.Environmentalist and Project Director for NGO Vanashakti, Stalin D, said, “Due to the water gushing and water channels flowing close to the trees during monsoon, over a period of time several trees have been losing soil around the base and titling. I was surprised to see people trimming a tree’s branches falling on the side of the road. This will affect the balance of the tree and can cause tree fall.”He said, “The BMC or Dairy department should ensure that they do not trim the trees without the presence of a tree expert. The BMC, which collects tree cess from every citizen to care for the trees, needs to wake up and take efforts to save all the trees along the Aarey stretch.”Stalin said a proper plan needed to be drawn to reinforce the soil by taking steps like shifting the water channels and even creating rock barriers to balance the tree and save the soil from washing off.Biju Augustine, member of Aarey Conservation Group (ACG) said, “Several trees lined up on the left side while on the way towards Powai from Goregaon are titling. We are planning to organise a meeting with BMC to take up the matter soon,” he said.A senior BMC official from the Tree department said that the citizens need to approach the ward office and register their concerns.

82 animals, including 7 rhinos died in floods in Kaziranga:

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>As many as 89 animals, including seven rhinoceros, have died due to the flooding in the Kaziranga National Park in Assam, the government told Parliament today. The Assam floods have affected the Kaziranga National Park. Seven rhinos, 82 hog deer, and two sambar deer have have died in the flooding, Environment Minister Harsh Vardhan said in a written reply. The floods have so far claimed over 70 lives in the northeastern state. Over 25 lakh people bore the brunt of the flooding in 29 districts. The administration set up 1,098 relief camps and distribution centres in the state. Vardhan said that based on Annual Plan of Operations submitted by tiger reserves, the government provides funds to them under the centrally-sponsored scheme ‘Project Tiger’ through the National Tiger Conservation Authority. The funds are used for various activities, including for measures to address flood situation such as creation of highlands and preventive structures against erosion, boats, rescue of animals, desiltation and creation of road network etc, he said.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Resolve Ken-Betwa river-linking issues: Uma to UP, MP govts

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Union minister Uma Bharti today urged the Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh governments to amicably resolve issues related to the Ken-Betwa river- linking programme so that the first phase of the project can be launched at the earliest. The water resources minister’s remarks come against the backdrop of Madhya Pradesh reportedly telling the Centre it would not allow work on phase-I of the ambitious project to begin until it is reworked to incorporate three other water management programmes in the state. Bharti also asked all states to “rise above” their respective outlooks and work instead for a national outlook on water management in the country – an apparent reference to various inter-state tussles on sharing river waters. She added the issue of water “should not be on fire, but must always be used to douse them”. “The officials of UP and MP should amicably resolve the pending issues related to Ken-Betwa link so that the central government may go ahead with the phase-I of the project at the earliest,” an official statement quoted Bharti as saying. She made the comments during the fourth edition of the ministry’s two-day ‘Jal Manthan’, a consultation programme the government organises on various water-related issues. Union Ministers of State for Water Resources Vijay Goel and Sanjeev Kumar Baliyan, Haryana’s Agriculture Minister Om Prakash Dhankar, and Water Resources Minister of Andhra Pradesh Devineni Uma Maheswara Rao also attended the inaugural session. The Ken-Betwa river-linking project is the first attempt of inter-linking of rivers and aims to irrigate an area of 6,35,661 hectares annually in three districts in Madhya Pradesh and four in Uttar Pradesh. In addition, the project will provide 49 million cubic metres of water for drinking purposes to a population of 13.42 lakh in the two beneficiary states. The project will also generate 78 mega watts of power. Bharti further said that the Centre is always concerned about inter-state disputes on water and tries to resolve it “amicably through persuasion”. She appreciated “political maturity” shown by chief ministers of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana to resolve the disputes between the sibling states and appealed to other states to follow the same. The ‘Manthan’ will be attended by eminent experts in the water sector, representatives of NGOs and senior officers of the central and state governments, the statement said. The attendees will discuss issues relating to irrigation projects today. Tomorrow, the deliberations will be held on river inter-linking programmes.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

40 mn people will at risk from rising sea level by 2050: Govt

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Nearly 40 million people in India will be at risk from the rise in sea-level by 2050, the government today said. “The report titled Global Environment Outlook (GEO-6) Regional Assessment for Asia and the Pacific, published in 2016 by United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), projects that nearly 40 million people in India will be at risk from sea-level rise by 2050,” Environment Minister Harsh Vardhan said in a written reply in Lok Sabha. He said in India’s second national communication submitted to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), sea-level is projected to rise by 3.5 to 34.6 inch between 1990 and 2100, which may result in saline coastal groundwater, endangering wetlands and inundating valuable land and coastal communities. “The Government has published Coastal Regulation Zone Notification, 2011 with a view to ensure livelihood security to the fisher communities and other local communities, living in the coastal areas and to conserve and protect coastal stretches,” he said. The Integrated Coastal Management Project has also been initiated with the objective of building national capacity for implementation of comprehensive coastal management approach in the country and piloting the integrated coastal zone management approach in selected states. “The national component of the project includes mapping, delineation and demarcation of hazard lines, all along the coast of India after taking into account the sea-level rise and other non-climatic parameters such as shore line changes, tides and waves,” he said. A National Centre for Sustainable Coastal Management (NCSCM) has been established to promote research and development in the area of coastal management, he added.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Builders can’t delete uploaded documents: RERA

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Developers will now have to be extra careful when they are uploading any document for registration with the Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA). A new order, issued by the authority, states that documents once uploaded by the promoter during registration or project update cannot be deleted. Builders claim that they were told the government will not be stringent initially but now things are changing. The authority has also claimed that if there’s a progress in the project and it hasn’t been updated with the authority, then action shall be taken too.A builder, who is registering his project with RERA, will have to furnish all documents pertaining to the project. This includes an updated list of flats sold, which has to be done quarterly. While a developer isn’t allowed to delete documents already uploaded, he is allowed to upload additional documents.According to Manohar Shroff, vice president, MCHI-CREDAI, Navi Mumbai, the reason behind the low registrations is the number of clarifications that are going up with each passing day. “Builders want to register but then every week there is a new rule. Now the latest rule is that once the documents are uploaded, they cannot be deleted. This will further deter builders from registration of the projects,” said Shroff.On the other hand, builders also claim that the government had assured them that initially it won’t be strict but it seems that was all talk. “If a document once uploaded won’t be deleted, this means a mistake shall prevail for the entire life of the project on public domain. We were expecting the government to give us some relaxation but the rules are getting stricter,” said a developer.AS PER THE ORDER”The promoter should ensure that project details are updated on a regular basis as and when there are updates and at least once in 90 days. The website shall contain a field on project last updated for public view. If it is brought to the notice of MahaRERA, that the data has not been updated for more than 90 days in spite of progress in the project, then necessary action shall be taken by MahaRERA.”

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