Daily Archives: January 28, 2012

Upgradation of Puri stations on track

The East Coast Railway (ECoR) is in the process of preparing a 30-year master plan for the entire Bhubaneswar – Cuttack region to make it among the best in the country, General Manager of East Coast Railway Indra Ghosh has said.

 Addressing the Republic Day function, he said plans are approved for upgrading the existing facilities at Bhubaneswar and Puri stations. Automatic signaling between Mancheswar and Retang will be commissioned by March 31 and by end of 2013, the same system will be installed between Barang and Khurda. An additional platform face at Bhubaneswar is expected to be commissioned within the next eight months.

 ECoR has been given the task of introducing seven new express and passenger train services. Out of these budgeted trains, three have already been introduced and the remaining trains will be introduced by the end of year.

 He informed that ECoR has turned in the best ever performance in the current year. Up to December 2011, the zone recorded a freight loading of 87.16 million tonne as compared to 79.98 million tonne in the previous year. In the passenger sector, ECoR carried 63.91 million passengers as compared to 59.13 million last year.

 Similarly, ECoR generated Rs 6,670 crore as revenue in the current year compared to Rs 6,218 in the corresponding period last year.

 Ghosh said the Kottavalasa-Simhachalam fourth line has already been commissioned while doubling of Sambalpur-Rengali section is on. Doubling of Rajathgarh-Radhakishorpur, Khurda Road-Begunia and Lanjigarh-Bhawanipatna are targeted for commissioning by March end.

 Similarly, traffic facility works at 95 locations have been completed, while rail connectivity to all the mega ports is underway on war-footing. On completion, East Coast Railway will be the number one Railway in providing connectivity to Ports, Ghosh added.

Task force formed to make Odisha slum free

With the objective to make the State slum-free, the State Government has constituted Odisha Slum Development Task Force under the chairmanship of Chief Secretary Bijay Kumar Patnaik.

According to official sources, OSDTF would help in resource mobilisation through multilateral and bilateral funding agencies and promotion of convergence by removing interdepartmental and interagency bottlenecks.

In the first phase, six cities of the State, like Bhubaneswar, Puri, Cuttack, Brahmapur, Sambalpur and Rourkela have been identified to make them slum-free urban local bodies, the sources said.

The Task Force would prioritise the slums to be taken up for resettlement and decide appropriate projects for development.

Meanwhile, as an action plan, the State Government has already constituted a State-level steering committee under the chairmanship of the Chief Minister to examine and approve the project reports submitted by the implementing agencies in consultation with the OSDTF.

The ‘slum free’ projects would be implemented jointly by the State Government and the Centrally-sponsored Rajiv Gandhi Awas Yojana. Both the State and the Central  Government would bear the cost of the project to be taken up on 50-50 basis, sources said.

Under the scheme, resettlement of slum areas and infrastructure development would be taken up on priority basis.

In order to prepare and implement the projects, city-level technical cells have been set up for mobilisation of people through NGO’s. The detailed project reports would be prepared after taking up socio-economic survey in the proposed cities. And it has been decided to undertake GIS mapping of the slum areas of the State soon, the sources said.

Meanwhile, the sources said two Pilot Projects  have been prepared — one for Rangamatia by the Bhubaneswar Municipal Commission and the other by the Cuttack Municipal Corporation — for 10 slums.

They said the Chief Secretary has directed the BDA and the BMC authorities to prepare a detailed project report for making the Unit-1, Unit-6 and Kargil road area slum-free.