Thursday, February 25, 2016

Thanks to state and central Govt. for approving Junagarh-Ambaguda via Nabarangpur railway line

Odisha Gets Highest Allocation of Rs 4682 Crore in Rail Budget
The New Indian Express (Bhubaneswar), Feb 25, 2016

BHUBANESWAR: Centre today made the highest ever allocation of Rs 4682 crore for Odisha in the railway budget for 2016-17 and accepted some of the major demands  of the State by sanctioning Jeypore-Malkangiri and Jeypore-Nabarangpur railway line projects.   
The allocation for Odisha in 2016-17 is 30 percent more than Rs 3712 crore alloted for the state in 2015-16. Appreciating the enhancement of allocation for Odisha, chief minister Naveen Patnaik requested railway minister Suresh Prabhu not to revise this downwards like last year. Actual allotment was 35 percent less than the budget allotment for Odisha in 2015-16, he said.   
The Junagarh-Ambaguda railway line via Nabarangpur, Berhampur-Sambalpur and Banspani-Barbil railway line projects with partnership of the state government were also sanctioned in the budget. Besides, the railway minister also conceded one of the major demands of the state government by extending the eastern dedicated freight corridor from Kharagpur to Vijayawada through the coast of Odisha.  
Other new railway line projects sanctioned for Odisha include the Barsuan-Banspani, Bandamunda-Rourkela and Narayangarh-Bhadrak third line.   
The Khurda Road-Bolangir railway line project has received the highest allocation of Rs 240 crore compared to Rs 195 crore last year while the Haridaspur-Paradip railway line project has got allocation of `200 crore against Rs 36.8 crore in 2015-16.   
Allocations for other projects include Daitari-Banspani (Haridaspur-Jakhapura third line)-Rs 12.87 crore, Talcher-Bimlagarh-Rs 150 crore, Bhadrak-Nirgundi (3rd line)- Rs 135 crore, Jarapada-Budhapank (3rd &4th line)-Rs 200 crore, Budhapank-Salegaon-Rs 170 crore and Angul-Duburi-Sukinda Road-Rs 150 crore and Jaleswar-Digha-Rs 2 crore.   
Besides, provisions for different doubling projects have also increased substantially. While Rs 220 crore has been alloted for doubling of 174.11 kilometer Sambalpur-Talcher railway line, Rs 419 crore has been provided for 182.11 kilometer Sambalpur-Titlagarh railway line doubling project.   Provision for other doubling projects include Delang-Puri-Rs 8 crore, Banspani-Daitari-Tomka-Jakhapura-Rs 241 crore, Rajathagarh-Baranga-Rs 1 crore, Viazianagaram-Sambalpur-225 crore and Koraput-Singapur Road-Rs 39 crore. However, a token allotment of Rs 1 lakh has been made for 12 kilometer Cuttack-Barang doubling project.   
An allocation of Rs 12.5 crore has been made for Brundamal-Jharsuguda fly over for joining downline while Rs 10 crore has been allocated for Khurda Road-Vizianagaram bypass.   
The East-West rail corridor will connect Odisha through Bondamunda-Rourkela-Jharsuguda and Brajraj Nagar stations while the East Coast Rail Corridor will connect Odisha through Jaleswar-Balasore-Bhadrak-Cuttack-Bhubaneswar-Khurda Road-Berhampur stations.  
Pardip will get special connectivity under all India scheme to connect important ports of the country. Besides, Puri will also developed as a national centre for religious rail tourism and connected with other pilgrim centres of the country.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Niyamgiri plea in - Govt moves court to allow bauxite mining

The Telegraph, Feb 20, 2016
Bhubaneswar, Feb. 19: The state government has made a fresh move to mine bauxite from the Niyamgiri hills in Kalahandi and Rayagada districts nearly three years after gram sabhas had rejected the proposal.
Steel and mines minister Prafulla Kumar Mallick said the government had filed a petition in the Supreme Court, seeking conduct of fresh gram sabhas to decide the fate of the Niyamgiri deposits - crucial to the industry, especially the Vedanta Group's refinery at Lanjigarh. This time, the proposal is for mining by the state-run Odisha Mining Corporation, which had earlier decided to work the in tandem with the Vedanta Group.
"The bauxite mine had originally been reserved for the corporation. It was later decided to take up mining as a joint venture between the corporation and the Vedanta Group. That was thwarted with environment clearance to the project being quashed by the Supreme Court. The joint venture agreement has been terminated, and the corporation is now interested in taking up mining alone. So, we have sought the apex court's permission," Mallick told The Telegraph.
The project had been jinxed since the beginning, facing protests from the Kondh people, who worship the Niyamgiri hills as their presiding deity. Backed by voluntary organisations such as Green Kalahandi, they held demonstrations and formed human chains in the hills protesting against mining.
As the movement against mining gained momentum, the Union ministry of environment and forests set up a committee to find out whether Vedanta had complied with the environmental laws and could be given "stage 2" status for final clearance. But, the panel's report submitted in 2010 indicated laws had been violated.
In 2013 following a Supreme Court directive, gram sabhas were organised between July 18 and August 19 at 12 places in the Niyamgiri hills to seek the local people's opinion. The sabhas unanimously rejected the proposal to mine the hills.
The fate of the project was sealed with the tribal people giving a thumbs down to mining at the final village assembly at Jarpa in Rayagada. The Congress, whose youth icon, Rahul Gandhi had campaigned actively against the project and described himself as the "sipahi" (soldier) of the local people, hailed the rejection as a victory. Other anti-mining activists also celebrated, but the development spelt trouble for Vedanta's refinery, which faced with a raw material crunch.
Mallick expressed hope that the apex court would give its nod for organising fresh gram sabhas, and this time, the people would support the project. "We think they will give their consent this time as people of the region, by and large, want economic development," said the minister.
However, Niyamgiri Surakasha Manch activist Raghu Pujari asserted that local tribal people would never allow the project to come through as they worship the hills as their god. "The government should not have made this move in the first place. But, if it has it is going to be defeated again," he averred.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Kalahandi on Growth Path: Naveen

The New Indian Express, Feb 19, 2016
BHAWANIPATNA: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik said the State Government is focusing on irrigation and communication in  Kalahandi, which is already on the path of development.
Addressing a public gathering at Junagarh on Thursday, he said, “the district has potential for further development in agriculture, industrial and allied sectors.”
Naveen, however, did not comment on the future of Jaring Medical College and the proposed agriculture university in Kalahandi.
Maintaining that the State Government was sincere towards the problems in the farming sector, the Chief Minister said his Government is trying its best to help the farmers.
The Chief Minister inaugurated four projects and laid foundation stones for as many in Kalahandi district.  He inaugurated a mega lift irrigation project at Utkella under Kesinga block which will irrigate 1,500 hectares, a high-level bridge over river Tel at Chilpa in Dharamgarh block and river Behera near Tendapali. Both the bridges have been constructed at a cost of Rs 12.12 crore and Rs 2.5 crore respectively. He also inaugurated a bridge over river Mudra near Chilguda in Koksara block, constructed at a cost of Rs 3.29 crore.
Naveen laid the foundation stone for Indravati Right canal renovation works estimated at Rs 325.95 crore, high-level bridges over Pipal nullah near Kamthana in Bhawanipatna block, Khapar nullah in Junagarh block and river Mudra at Khuntia in Koksara block.
 The CM was accompanied by Urban Development Minister Puspendra Singhdeo. Prior to his visit, 13 Congress workers, including former Junagarh NAC chairman Sudhansu Sekhar Barad, were taken into preventive custody. They were released after Naveen flew out to Gudvela in Balangir district.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Junagarh MLA to Play Cameo

The New Indian Express, Feb 12, 2016
JUNAGARH (KALAHANDI):  A pilot, a politician and now an actor, Junagarh MLA Captain Dibya Sankar Mishra is all characters rolled into one.
The MLA would soon be seen in a cameo role in ace film director Sabyasachi Mohapatra’s latest ‘Pahada Ra Luha’ (Tears of Mountain). Mishra will be playing Commando Nandan, who leads the fight against Maoists.
At a time when silver screen idols are jumping into politics to cash in on their popularity, Mishra has taken a plunge into films with a purpose.
Talking to ‘Express,’ Mishra said the idea behind his acting in the film is to reach out to the people and convey the message that Maoists are not friends but are out there to exploit and terrorise innocent tribals in the name of social justice.
After churning out two critically-acclaimed films in a row, ‘Sala Budha’ and ‘Aadim Vichar’, ‘Pahada Ra Luha’ also deals with problems of ethnic communities and the changes in their lives due to displacement and mining.  It is learnt that to add twist to the story, by including the Maoist angle, Mishra has been launched in a cameo role.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Solar Care For School

Tathya.in2016-Feb-04 | Bhubaneswar
Inmates of the Residential School at far flung Thuamul Rampur are happy with installation of Solar Plant on the Roof Top of the School Building.
This will help them out to Read and Write in the evening hours on a hassle free manner.
Thanks to the Initiative Chandrasekhar Mishra, Managing Director of Crux Power, who has taken pain to set up roof Top Solar Plant in a backward Block of Kalahandi, which is also one of the most backward regions of theState.
The Institution run by  Siksha Vikash Samiti is home to about 163 students and 17 members of staff. It provides its wards with hostel accommodation and three square meals each day, but the scarcity of power and clean drinking water are major hurdles for their education and livelihood. 
With no electricity, students depend on kerosene lamps which negatively impact their health as well as study routine. 
The only source of water is from the adjacent river of Indravati that often tends to dry up. With the shortage of water, toilets, bathrooms and suitable sanitation arrangements are under constructed and are not completely installed.
To address these obstacles of the school, Crux Power initiated the usage of alternative energy – Solar Power. 
The lighting and electrical power support for classrooms and hostel was to be provided through a 5kWp off- Grid roof top solar power plant. 
Secondly, an RO based water Purification system of 1000 Liters Per Hour would be set up to cater the needs of the students and also the resident villagers nearby. Along with it, an overhead tank was to be constructed to meet the sanitation need of the students. 
Cleantech Initiative – an initiative by Seva International, a survey was conducted by Crux Power that resulted in the proposal for the 5kWp Solar Power Plant to operate all major loads including fans, CFL Lights and Computer, Television provision in the hostel and school. 

Cleantech led by Swayam Baral tried to develop this project, which would help developing an eco-friendly and disease free environment for the students and staff at the residential school in the Kalahandi district.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Bhawanipatna all set for beautification

The Statesman, Feb 5, 2016
The district administration has initiated measures for beautification of Bhawanipatna town. 
It has decided to set up Saheed Smrutu Pillar near the government hospital and to beautify the Autonomous Govt College square, Ghoda ghat chowk and Circuit House and Ambedkar Statue Chowk. 
It is also decided to improve the traffic/signal system/use of solar light in traffic signals and to decorate road side wall with paintainings depicting the culture, heritage and art of Kalahandi district. 
A meeting chaired by district collector Kalahandi D. Brundha has also decided to erect five welcome gates at the five entry points to the town here.
Similarly in the 5 entry points to the district near Ampani, Amath, M Rampur, near Khariar and near Gunupur welcome gates will also be constructed. 
Among others MLA Bhawanipatna Anama Naik, SP Kalahandi Brijesh Rai, Deputy Director planning Bimbadhar Sethi , district Culture officer Kalicharan Mohanthy and Chairman of Bhawanipatna Municipality Aditya Nanda attended the meeting.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016