Posts filed under ‘Central Govt. Grants’
Following is a report by PTI http://www.ptinews.com/news/6802853_Central-team-to-visit-drought-hit-Odisha.html
Bhubaneswar, Dec 1 (PTI) A 10-member Central team led by Union Joint Secretary, Agriculture, K Srinivas is scheduled to undertake a visit to Odisha’s drought affected areas from Thursday, officials said today.
The team, which will reach the state capital tomorrow, will visit the drought hit areas in separate groups on December 3 and 4, Special Relief Commissioner (SRC) P K Mohapatra said.
The team will have a meeting with state officials here on December 5,
Mahapatra said the Centre has constituted an inter- ministerial team led by Srinivas after the state government submitted an interim memorandum on drought.
The team will fly to the affected districts of Nuapada, Kalahandi, Balangir and Bargarh in two groups in a helicopter. After visiting the four districts, the team might take a decision to visit other drought affected districts, the SRC said.
The team will leave for New Delhi on December 6.
NEW DELHI: No-frills airports are all set to become a reality in India. Aviation minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju on Tuesday said that five cities — Teju (Andhra Pradesh); Hubli and Belgaum (Karnataka); Kishangarh (Rajasthan near Ajmer) and Jharsuguda (Odisha) — have been identified as the places that will first get no-frills airports.
“It will not be correct to call them low-cost airports. They will have no frills. Airports Authority of India (AAI) has developed this model airport, without compromising safety and security. This will result in low cost of operation and make it viable for the airlines to run their services. AAI is committed to commencing work in this financial year at the five locations,” the minister said at his 100-day press conference.
These airports will, to begin with, have airstrips long enough to handle turboprops like ATR and Q-400. “They will have no carousels or conveyor belts. Only the security hold areas at these airports will be air-conditioned. They will have no aerobridges,” said a senior Airports Authority of India (AAI) official.
The terminal buildings will be single storey with simple structures unlike the fancy glass-and-steel structures in the metros. Also, these airports will have mobile air traffic control units instead of big ATC towers. “Each of these airports would cost Rs 55 crore to Rs 85 crore. They should be ready in two-to-three years,” said the official. The five cities were selected from a list of 50 places across the country. Finalization of low-cost airports was among the list of achievements which included the aviation ministry disposing off over 9,100 old files and removing over 15 truckloads of useless items from the Rajiv Gandhi Bhavan headquarters in Delhi.
“As many as 12,977 files have been reviewed, 3,839 files have been recorded and 9,146 files have been weeded out,” aviation ministry joint secretary G Asok Kumar told reporters.
Raju on Tuesday launched DGCA’s know-your-rights portal. DGCA chief Prabhat Kumar said the portal will provide information on the rights of passengers in cases of delays, cancellation and denied boarding, lost, delayed, misplaced and damaged baggage; and on matters related to booking, airfare components and refund of air tickets. The grievance redressal mechanism, names of nodal officers and their contact numbers would be shared with the public on the portal.
Kumar said the government has come out with new measures for physically challenged flyers. Two window seats will remain blocked for them till 24 hours before departure. “Delivery of check-in baggage will be given to them either at the ladder point or exit of escalator belt. Airlines will give special training for their staff for this purpose.”
Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik gave his approval to such a proposal, the sources said, adding Odisha was the first state in the country to provide free of cost land for any railway project and offer to bear 50 percent of cost of the construction of the railway line.
The state government’s action in this regard came due to tardy progress of the 289 km Khurda-Bolangir railway line.
Though the project was sanctioned way back in 1994-95, only 52 km rail line construction work was expected to be completed by end of 2013-14 fiscal, they said.
“As the Khurda-Bolangir railway project is considered significant for the socio-economic development of the people of at least four districts (Bolangir, Boudh, Nayagarh and Sonepur), the state government was ready to contribute to the project,” the sources said.
Though Khurda-Bolangir project is considered as the biggest railway project in the state, only Rs 40 crore was allotted for the project in the last railway budget.
The first survey work for the line was conducted in 1945 by the then Bengal-Nagpur Railway (BNR) as it was felt that there should be railway link for the tribal dominated districts of Bolangir, Kalahandi, Koraput and Phulbani.
However, after Independence the project remained in cold storage till the Planning Commission approved it in 1993 and it received the presidential nod in 1994. Its cost was then estimated at Rs 383 crore. The project was expected to be completed within five years but funds crunch became a hindrance.
A number of delegations had met subsequent Railway Ministers, without any progress. Therefore, the state government decided to take half of the responsibility for completion of the project.
Health and Family Welfare Minister Damodar Rout on Friday demanded 100 per cent support from the Central Government for setting up of four new medical colleges in the State.
Rout pressed the demands before the Centre while attending a two-day meeting of Health Ministers and Secretaries from all States convened by the Union Health Ministry in New Delhi.
Highlighting the development in the health sector of Odisha, Rout sought more Central aids for different programmes being implemented in the sector. Expressing grave concern over the health condition of primitive tribals and their low population growth rate, he advocated for greater focus on the tribal dominated districts, particularly the Kalahandi, Balangir and Koraput (KBK) region where both infant mortality rate (IMR) and maternal mortality rate (MMR) as well as mortality and morbidity rates are high because of incidences of various diseases, especially malaria and diarrhoea.
In the last 11 years, Rout stated the State has made significant strides in bringing down IMR and MMR. Still, the IMR in the State is 57 per 1,000 live births and MMR 258 per lakh live births. The figures are still higher than the national average and hence much need to be done to reduce them,” said Rout, adding, “For development and upgradation of health infrastructure in the State, we need Centre’s full support.”
Rout also drew the attention of the Union Health Minister for opening of Regional Geriatric and Cancer Centres in all the Government medical colleges and sanctioning more ANM and GNM training centers for the State. Further, Rout urged the Central Government to increase its share in the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) and reduce the State’s share from 25 per cent to 15 per cent.
Health and Family Welfare secretary Pradeepta Kumar Mohapatra and Mission Director of NRHM (Odisha) Dr Pramod Meherda attended the meeting.
BHUBANESWAR: In good tidings for aspiring medical students, Odisha is all set to have four new government medical colleges, reducing the competition for admission into MBBS to some extent.
In a new experiment, the Union government is planning to open over 60 medical colleges across the country in partnership with the state governments during the 12th five year plan period (2012-2017). The Union government would fund 75% of the cost while the respective states will bear the rest 25%.
Sources said the Centre has responded favourably to a proposal of the Odisha government to open four colleges in the state. A senior state government functionary said the Centre has already given its on-principle nod to the proposal. The medical colleges would have 100MBBS seats each to begin with, he said.
Confirming the state’s move, health secretary Pradipta KumarMahapatra told TOI, “We have proposed to convert four district headquarters hospitals into medical colleges under the new plan. We are hopeful the plan will materialize.” Mahapatra said the government will select the four district hospitals in due course of time.
Government sources said availability of MBBS seats will substantially increase from next academic year irrespective of the fate of the proposed four new colleges. The government is planning to add 100 MBBS seats in SCB Medical College from 2013-14. The government has already sought the permission of the Medical Council of India for the hike.
At present, there are 500 MBBS seats in government sector in the state. These include 150 MBBS seats each in the three state-government run colleges: SCB, VSS Medical College and MKCG Medical College and 50 MBBS seats in the Union government-run All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS).
After increasing the seats in SCB to 250 from next academic year, the state is also planning similar increase in seats in the two other colleges in subsequent years. Similarly, the Union government has announced to increase the MBBS seats in AIIMS to 100.
In private sector, there are 400 MBBS seats at present, 100 each in the four private medical colleges including three in Bhubaneswar and one in Rourkela. The private sector seats are likely to go up by another 100 from next year when an upcoming private medical college at Jaring in Kalahandi district starts admission.
The Centre has responded favourably to a proposal of the Odisha government to open four colleges in the state. The medical colleges would have 100 MBBS seats each to begin with, officials said
New Delhi: Government is planning to develop two ‘smart’ cities with a host of modern features like intelligent transport and carbon neutral status in each of the states in the second phase of the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal mission.
“We have an urban renewal mission which means that the central government funds the cities and one of our programmes is that we propose to have two smart cities in every state,” Urban Development minister Kamal Nath told reporters here today.
The minister said medium sized cities with half a million to one million population will be developed as smart cities and expertise of Austrian Institute of Technology had been sought for the purpose.
Nath was speaking after meeting a delegation led by Austrian minister of Transport, Innovation and Technology Doris Bures here.
“Now how do we define these smart cities, what will it cover….right from broadband, intelligent transport to carbon neutral (features), these are so many components…that is what we propose to collaborate with the Austrian Institute of Technology,” he said.
“We want to seek assistance from the Institute on what kind of model smart cities we should look at,” he added.
Nath also said that medium sized cities like Ujjain or Jabalpur would be considered for the proposal to create smart cities.
“We cannot take on very large cities for smart cities at this stage, we must recognise that. We have to take our medium sized ones, so we want to look at cities with half a million population to one million population instead of trying to take on cities with ten million population,” he said.
“We have discussed the possibility of collaboration between the Austrian Institute of Technology and the National Institute of Urban Affairs which comes under the ministry of Urban Development,” Nath said.
“We want to get technologies towards rapid urbanisation which we are going through, which includes smart cities, urban transportation facilities and their integration,” Nath said.
Austrian minister Doris Bures expressed hope for a greater cooperation between the two countries.
Nath was questioned by reporters about reports that a team of officials was being sent to Chile to understand the defects in the airport metro.
“It is not final yet, but there is an idea that it should be seen that if should study such a thing which had happened there. The report in this regard is not ready yet,” Nath said.
In the run up to the Railway Budget for 2011-12, the Orissa government has requested the Ministry of Railways to sanction Rs 2085 crore for the state in the current financial year for various railway projects including new rail links, extension of existing rail links, improvement in passenger amenities, introduction of new trains and increase in frequency of trains.
The state government has sought Rs 350 crore for the Khurda Road-Bolangir rail link (289 km), Rs 250 crore for the Paradeep-Haridaspur rail link (82 km), Rs 150 crore each for the Angul-Duburi-Sukinda Road rail line (90 km) and Talcher-Bimalagarh (154 km) rail line and Rs 60 crore for the Lanjigarh Road-Junagarh rail link (56 km).
For gauge conversion, the state has sought Rs 20 crore for the 89-km Rupsa-Bangriposi and Rs 30 crore for the 90-km Nuapada-Gunupur.
Similarly, for doubling projects, the state government has requested the Ministry of Railways to allot Rs 760 crore. Presently, 20 doubling projects are under execution in order to further augment line capacity. Allocation of funds for the second bridge on Kathajori and Kauakhai and Haridaspur-Jakhapura (third line) needs to be sharply increased.
The proposals for new doubling include Rayagada-Koraput rail link and patch doubling of Kottavalasa-Kirandul line. The state government has requested the Ministry of Railways to sanction doubling of this rail link which connects the port city of Visakhapatanam with the iron ore rich area of Kirandul.
For undertaking new electrification works, the state has sought Rs 100 crore from the Ministry of Railways in 2011-12. It has also requested the ministry to sanction funds for the development of multi modal logistics parks and container freight stations at Kalinga Nagar, Angul, Jharsuguda, Rourkela and Choudwar.
The Railways ministry has been requested to sanction some new rail links in 2011-12. These include Rupsa-Burhamura-Chakulia (35 km), Nuapada-Gunupur-Theruvali (79 km), Banspani-Barbil (15 km), Bhadrachalam Raod-Malkangiri-Jeypore-Junagarh-Lanjigarh Road-Talcher-Bimlagarh, Bargarh-Nuapada via Padampur (120 km), Talcher-Gopalpur (245 km), Puri-Konark (35 km), Rupsa-Bangriposi-Gorumahisani (35 km), Badampahar-Keonjhar (70 km), Berhampur-Phulbani (169.8 km) and Khurda Road-Rajathgarh (59 km).
The Orissa government has proposed to set up a dedicated industrial corridor in the Meramandali-Angul-Talcher-Chhendipada belt linking the coal mines, power generating units and steel plants.
This proposed corridor, to be co-habited by multiple users, is estimated to cost Rs 2192 crore. The state government has requested the Railways ministry to finalize the policy to construct such dedicated rail corridors in coal and mineral bearing areas.
The state has also given proposal for introduction of 16 new trains. This includes Duronto type super fast trains between Bhubaneswar-Mumbai, Puri-jaipur, Bhubaneswar-Pune, Bhubaneswar-Bangalore and Puri-Surat. It has also presented proposal for introduction of a super fast express between Visakhapatanam and Allahabad, express train between Koraput and Visakhapatanam, express train from Titlagarh to Bhubaneswar via Rayagada, express train from Keonjhar to Howrah, express train from Barbil to Visakhaptanam, super fast express from Rourkela to New Delhi, inter-city express between Puri and Tata via Keonjhar, express train between Berhampur and Rourkela, direct train between Bhubaneswar and Kalka, express train service between Jagdalpur and Kolkata, inter-city express between Berhampur and Puri and passenger train services between Barbil and Puri as well as from Rayagada to Bolangir.
Moreover, the state has sought Rs 25 crore for five new coaching terminals and Rs 50 crore for seven ‘Adarsh’ stations (model stations) and two multi-functional complexes.
Kolkata, Dec 20 (IANS) Vice President Mohammad Hamid Ansari Monday said that higher education cannot improve in India unless state universities are able to obtain more funds, create new infrastructure and enrich their existing academic programmes.
‘Higher education cannot improve in India unless state universities, which are the backbone and represent the bulk of enrolment, are able to obtain greater funds, create new infrastructure and enrich their existing academic programmes,’ Ansari said at the Foundation Day Lecture 2010 of the University of Calcutta.
Even though we have been able to achieve an economic growth rate of 9 percent of the GDP despite low enrolment in higher education, it would not be possible for us to sustain such an economic growth, maintain our competitiveness and enhance our productivity without at least doubling our higher education enrolment, he said.
‘We must create avenues for vocational education so that entering universities does not become a default choice for the sake of employment,’ said Ansari.