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- 259 new vehicles hit city roads every day Proshun Chakraborty | TNN | Nov 28, 2018, 03:21 IST
Nagpur: Spike in fuel prices notwithstanding, the city saw rise in the sale of four-wheelers and motorcycles. Between April and October, the city’s two RTOs saw a 2% jump in the number of new vehicles registered.
About 259 vehicles were registered in Nagpur every day during the period as against the average of 104 per day in the last six years. Between April and October, Nagpur city (both city and east offices) saw 55,400 new vehicles hit the roads. Of the total new vehicles registered, the number of cars is 7,093 and motorcycles/scooters account for 42,140.
In 2017-18, when fuel prices started soaring — 93,535 new vehicles hit the roads, against 59,017 in 2016-17 when the prices were much lower.
Interestingly, during festive season this year, the sale of new vehicles dipped. On Dussehra (when many people prefer to purchase new vehicles), only 4,565 vehicles were registered with the three offices of Nagpur Regional Transport Office (city, deputy east and rural) compared to 7,469 on the same day last year. “Sale of both four and two-wheelers was down by 30% to 40% during festival season this year,” said automobile dealers in the city.
The current year’s data from the transport department, collected from the city’s two RTOs, showed most vehicles, at 39,173, were registered at the deputy RTO east, which caters to areas in north-central, eastern and southern parts of the city. The city RTO, which mostly covers west and south-west Nagpur, registered 16,227 new vehicles.
Currently, the city’s vehicle population is more than 16.62 lakh. Actual number of vehicles on roads could be even more as vehicles registered with rural RTO too ply on city roads.
Nikhil Kusumgar, a leading two-wheeler dealer in the city, said the demand for vehicles has witnessed a sharp decline. He said 2% rise is nothing when we compare the sale figures of 2017-18 and 2016-17. In 2017-18, the registration of new vehicles in both the RTOs had witnessed almost 40% rise. He attributed the decline to the increase in cost of vehicles apart from curtailment of aggressive finance by banks and other institutions.
City RTO Bajrang Kharmate said: “During the octroi regime, most people used to register their vehicles at rural RTO, outside city limits, to save the heavy 7% tax, but after the abolishment of octroi and its replacement with GST, more people have started registering vehicles in city offices.”
Traffic experts translate the increase in sale of vehicles to poor means of public transport and increased disposable income among Nagpurians. “Both these factors are behind more people buying their own vehicles,” they say.
Traffic expert and joint secretary of a city-based NGO Janaakrosh, Ashok Karandikar, pointed out how the rise in vehicles is bad news for Nagpur’s already crowded roads. “Poor public transport, aspiration of the people to own their vehicles and easy availability of finance apart from improved standard of living is resulting in this,” said Karandikar. He also warned that the uncontrolled vehicle growth in the city needs to be regulated. “Already, the city roads have started witnessing congestion. Citizens are also facing lack of parking spaces,” he said. “Government needs to restrict the number of vehicles being registered by improving public transport,” he said.
Traffic expert Vinay Kunte said reliance on public transport needs to be improved and pointed out that citizens don’t prefer Aapli Bus due to its irregular schedule. “Also, many strikes by conductors, drivers and operators in the recent past have forced citizens not to depend on city buses,” he said.
- Most city areas to see 50% water cut Proshun Chakraborty | tnn | Nov 28, 2018, 03:56 IST
Water from Khekranala dam has been released at the rate of 333.3MLD
Nagpur: Water supply to north, east and parts of south Nagpur is all set to come down by 50% as water level at jackwell has gone 8cm below the inlet strainer top.
A senior official from NMC’s water works department confirmed this and said pumping from Kanhan water treatment plant will reduce further. “Today the plant operated at 70% of normal flow/production (normal production is 195MLD). In next five days, production will further reduce to 40-50% resulting in less and restricted water supply to north, east and south Nagpur areas,” the officer said.
Recently, TOI had reported that the under-construction Kochchhi barrage has stopped the flow of river resulting in water level at Kanhan WTP reaching dead stock. Now, due to less than required water availability, only partial pumping will be done, the officer added.
Meanwhile, the Nagpur Municipal Corporation has demanded water resources department to release 1000 MLD. Simultaneously, water has been released at the rate of 333.3 MLD from Khekra Naala dam which will take at least three days to reach the destination. The released water will flow down and fill up to overflow point at Kochchhi barrage. From Kochchhi barrage the normal flow of water will resume in the downstream towards Kanhan intake well. It may take further 5-6 days for water to reach Kanhan intake well.
- NMC revenue to rise 3 times in new property tax system Anjaya Anparthi | TNN | Nov 28, 2018, 03:58 IST
Nagpur: The cash-strapped Nagpur Municipal Corporation’s (NMC) revenue is likely to increase three times in the new ready reckoner-based rateable value property tax system. It also means citizens will pay average 2-3 times more property tax.
NMC had launched new tax system from 2015-16 and postponed its implementation to 2017-18. The revaluation of existing properties and assessment of new ones kicked-off from November 2015.
Data available with NMC property tax department shows revaluation of 4.91 lakh properties has been completed and demand notes for 4.25 lakh properties issued. Total demand for 4.25 lakh properties is over Rs300 crore.
Earlier, 4.50 lakh properties were on record, and the tax demand from these properties had been Rs165 crore per annum.
NMC assistant commissioner (property tax) Milind Meshram told TOI total revenue/current demand is likely to increase to over Rs450-500 crore on completion of revaluation drive. “We are expecting the number of properties to increase to 6 lakh. Assessment of new properties will bring a good chunk of revenue to NMC,” he said.
Apart from current demand, NMC’s arrears on existing properties is around Rs320 crore.
Only challenge for NMC is recovery of entire demand. Recovery from property tax was Rs189 crore. After launch of new tax system, the recovery increased to Rs202 crore in 2017-18. The increase was very less as revaluation of existing properties and assessment of new properties was still pending.
NMC has recovered Rs112 crore in this fiscal up to November 26, which is Rs22 crore more than that recovered last year on the same date.
Meshram said recovery will increase once NMC issues demand notes to all. “Our target is to complete revaluation drive by December-end,” he said.
The drive was launched in November 2015 with private agency Cybertech Systems and Software roped in. Target for the agency was to complete revaluation of 2,000 properties by February 2016 on pilot basis followed by remaining properties. The agency was supposed to complete the drive within 22 months from November 2015. This means the drive has been delayed by 14 months.
Meshram said the drive was delayed due to revision in policies related to the tax system. “We developed a good software under the drive. Geo-mapping of all properties, including open plots, has been completed. I think NMC is first in entire state to ensure geo mapping of open plots. We can identify expansion in existing structures and if any development in open plots using the geo mapping in future,” he said.
- MahaMetros curved road at Bharat Nagar to affect only 40 trees
Anjaya Anparthi | TNN | Nov 29, 2018, 12:08 IST
Picture for representational purpose only
NAGPUR: In view of the protests by green activists, MahaMetro has started to plan a curved road instead of a straight one to reduce the number of trees uprooted on Dr Panjabrao Deshmukh Krishi Vidyapeeth (PDKV) land at Bharat Nagar. However, MahaMetro is firm on developing the alternative road to divert traffic when the stretch along Futala Lake is closed for redevelopment in the near future.
A team from MahaMetro on Tuesday conducted a preliminary survey on PDKV land to demarcate the alignment of proposed road. It was the first survey on the site. Until now, the plan for the proposed road was only on paper.
A MahaMetro official told TOI that fewer than 40 trees will affected in the proposed road. We will not construct a straight road, to minimize impact on the greenery. We have identified an area that is lying vacant. We will construct a curved road. And, we will plan transplantation of trees instead of chopping them down, he said.
MahaMetro officials added exact demarcation of proposed road will be finalized later after final survey. Proposed roads entry and exit point will remain the same. The road will start from PDKV compound wall near Bharat Nagar Square on Amravati Road, and will end at the office of Maharashtra Jeevan Pradhikaran (MJP) on Telangkhedi Hanuman Mandir road, he said.
The width of the proposed road will be 18 meter and length will be 500 meter.
Earlier, MahaMetro in association with Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) had planned a straight road as it was reserved in the citys development plan. A straight road is likely to come at the cost of around 500 big trees.
Activist Jaydeep Das, who launched an online petition and lodged complaints with office bearers and officials, said MahaMetro should just drop the plan to construct the road. The road in front of Futala Lake will be closed for just one year. There are many alternate roads to divert traffic. The road, whether straight or curved, will cause damage to the environment. Transplantation of big trees is not possible. And, other trees situated on the premises will also be affected once traffic movement begins. Large number of birds, monkeys etc in the premises will also get disturbed, he said.
Apart from activists, many residents of Bharat Nagar have come out in support of Das campaign against the proposed road. Das is also planning to file a PIL in the Nagpur bench of Bombay high court opposing the proposed road.
- Reinforce rules in tiger corridors, buffer zones: NTCA Vijay Pinjarkar | TNN | Nov 30, 2018, 03:45 IST
Nagpur: Realising that linear projects like roads and railways and powers lines are proving detrimental for tigers, the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) has directed all the chief wildlife wardens (CWLWs) in tiger ranging states to strongly comply with existing statutory provisions. The circular was issued on Wednesday.
On November 22, TOI had reported how Maharashtra chief wildlife warden has been bypassed in road development projects in corridor and buffer of six tiger reserves in Vidarbha. There are already protests against road development around Bandipur reserve in Karnataka.
Both, NTCA, the topmost authority monitoring tigers reserves in the country, and CWLWs are being ignored while implementing these linear projects. A CWLW is the deciding authority in every state on wildlife matters.
Earlier, as reported by TOI on July 29, of the 1,697 road, irrigation and railway projects, 399 projects worth Rs1.3 lakh crore are coming up in the tiger landscape of Central India and Eastern Ghats. Spread over eight states, the area is home to 688 (31%) of the country's 2,226 tigers and these projects threaten the existence of the big cats.
Significantly, proposers of 345 of the 399 projects are not aware of the tiger corridor status of forestland patches that they seek to divert. Such unplanned development threatens the future of tigers in the country, says a report — ‘Policy framework for connectivity conservation and smart green linear infrastructure development in the Central Indian & Eastern Ghats Tiger Landscape’.
The report has been prepared by Wildlife Conservation Trust (WCT) researchers Milind Pariwakam, Aditya Joshi, Sheetal Navgire and Srinivas Vaidyanathan.
Taking serious note of TOI reports, NTCA on November 28, 2018 asked chief wildlife wardens to assert on Section 38 (O) (1) (b) of the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972 which says, “Evaluate and assess various aspects of sustainable ecology and disallow any ecologically unsustainable and use such as, mining, industry and other projects within the tiger reserve.”
Secondly, NTCA said, Section 38 (O) (1) (g) of the WPA states, “Ensure that the tiger reserves and areas linking one protected area or tiger reserve with another protected area or tiger reserve are not diverted for ecologically unsustainable uses, except in public interest and with the approval of the National Board for Wildlife (NBWL) and on the advice of the NTCA.”
The NTCA has said in respect of projects falling within a notified tiger reserve be it core or buffer, irrespective of area involved, the project proposal needs wildlife clearance. “Therefore, the proponents will have to submit proposal to the CWLW of the state concerned and if found sustainable, it shall be placed before the state board for wildlife (SBWL). The proposal, if agreed upon shall be forwarded for consideration of the standing committee (SC) of NBWL. The SC shall refer it to the NTCA for its advice. There may be areas within the buffer where legal status of the land can be other than forest. Here too, Section 38(O) (1)(b) shall be invoked and the CWLW can refer the matter directly to NTCA,” officials told TOI.
Secondly, in case of proposals involving corridor/linking area, irrespective of legal status of land, the proponents may have to seek wildlife or forest clearance or both. The latter clearance shall be necessitated in case legal status of the land is forest.
“We have asked the states to follow statutory provisions in letter and spirit in respect of all projects falling within the notified tiger reserves and its corridors for wildlife clearance irrespective of area involved and requirements of obtaining forest clearance or not,” said NTCA officials.
Reacting to the NTCA directive, Pench field director Ravikiran Govekar said, “We achieved steady success in increasing tiger population by active management in core area leading to dispersal in buffer zones. Now if these connecting linkages of tiger reserves are not safeguarded with proactive measures and policy decision implementations, all efforts of improving source population of tigers in last 45 years will go in vain as corridors play very important role in tenurial dynamics of tiger.”
Govekar adds, “Scientific tiger conservation is impossible without proper migration paths and strengthening corridors. Fragmented corridors not only impact the genetic vibrancy of tiger populations but also flare up man-tiger conflict, leading to further socio-political alienation of people.”
THE STATUTORY PROVISIONS
1) Section 38(O) (1) of Wildlife (Protection) Act 1972:
The NTCA shall have powers to evaluate and assess various aspects of sustainable ecology and disallow any ecologically unsustainable and use such as, mining, industry and other projects within the tiger reserve.
2) Section 38(O) (1)(g) of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972:
The NTCA shall have powers to ensure that the tiger reserves and areas linking one protected area or tiger reserve with another protected area or tiger reserve are not diverted for ecologically unsustainable uses, except in pubic interest and with the approval of NBWL on the advice of NTCA.
- HC blasts collector, panel for failing to maintain Lonar Lake Vaibhav Ganjapure | tnn | Nov 30, 2018, 03:38 IST
Nagpur: Expressing displeasure over failure of authorities to carry on development of historic Lonar Lake, the Nagpur bench of Bombay high court on Wednesday flayed Buldhana collector and committee constituted under him to preserve and develop it.
Observing that authorities and the committee did nothing than mere conducting meetings all these years, a division bench comprising Justice Sunil Shukre and Justice Shreeram Modak warned them to take concrete steps and file a compliance report before adjourning the hearing till December 19.
The bench also noted failure of the authorities in completing stipulated works such as erecting fencing around the lake and stopping sewage water from flowing into it.
The censuring came while hearing a plea (No 4549/2009) by lawyer Kirti Nipankar along with Govind Khekale and Sudhakar Bugdane from Buldhana, through counsel Anand Parchure, claiming that Lonar Lake was slowly degrading because of pollution and silting.
Earlier, Parchure pointed out that the ‘Lonar Reservoir Damage Control and Conservation Committee’ under Buldhana collector, was only conducting meeting without doing any concrete work at the site and also wasting HC’s time. He said, nothing changed on the ground, despite repeated directives from the judiciary.
The petitioners contended that the lake, created due to meteriorite impact about 50 million years ago, was slowly degrading and dying due to increasing pollution and silting. The lake is recognized worldwide and is a subject to various studies as an impact crater. They pointed out that though the crater was declared as a protected site by the Government of India, no measures had been taken to preserve it till date. The lake is currently being used for dumping drainage waste by the municipal council which is severely harming it ecology and surrounding environment. Citing various studies and reports, the petitioners contended that lake’s saline nature is its unique feature.
Citing Archeological survey of India (ASI), the petitioners demanded that steps be taken to nominate the crater along with Western Ghats into United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation’s (UNESCO) world heritage sites list.
They prayed for directives to the respondents to take steps to ensure that the crater is included in world heritage sites by UNESCO. They also demanded to create a common pool of funds allotted under different heads for the crater’s development.
During one of the hearings, the HC noted that the crater is one of the wonders in the world and its historic importance needs to be preserved.
- Roads in bad shape but NMC focuses on gardens
Proshun Chakraborty | TNN | Dec 2, 2018, 02:55 IST
POTHOLES: Road patch between Rani Jhansi Square and Munje Chowk is full of potholes posing threat to motorists... Read More
Nagpur: At a time when the Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) has kept important civic works like strengthening of sewage network, asphaltation of pothole roads in Hudco Colony and many others areas on hold citing cash crunch, the standing committee headed by Virendra Kukreja on Saturday approved Rs1.94 crore works for constructing jogging tracks and other civil works in four city gardens.
Of Rs1.94 crore, the state government will bear half of the expenditure, said Kukreja. The amount has been sanctioned from district planning committee.
As per the public works department estimate, the NMC will spend over Rs61.50 lakh for constructing compound wall, jogging track and other civil works in Bajrang Nagar ground in prabhag number 32. Rs53.30 lakh works will be carried out in another playground in Old Subhedar Layout in the same prabhag.
The PWD department also planned to develop a playground at Prabhag number 34 by spending Rs24.20 lakh and another Rs54.20 lakh will be used to construct jogging track and toilets in Ramai Garden at Chandan Nagar (Prabhag number 31). All gardens and playgrounds selected are from South Nagpur assembly constituency.
The standing committee also approved the general administration departments proposal to scrap tenders of one security agency Industrial Security Services (ISS) after it violated terms and conditions of agreements.
ISS was not paying minimum wages to the guards though it was a clause in the agreement. The panel rejected the proposal to scrap Kishor Agencies another security agency firm that had failed to submit labour licence despite reminders.
The panel also rejected the general administrative departments proposal to entrust Nagpur District Security Guards Board as one of security service providers as it was not ready to consider loss of property due to theft or any other reason. In the past, the NMC legal team also gave negative remark against the board on this count, said Kukreja.
In all, the panel approved 45 proposals pertaining to development works worth over Rs19.26 crore.
Show cause notice
Standing committee chairman Virendra Kukreja on Saturday directed the civic administration to issue show cause notices to all assistant municipal commissioners of 10 zones for poor property tax collection. Kukreja said, as per Rs500 crore tax target, the zones have recovered Rs115 crore. Till date, the zones should have recovered Rs200 crore towards property tax.
Kukreja said as per the ongoing property assessment, the NMC can realize Rs722 crore from property tax this year. This includes Rs320 crore arrears and Rs402 crore from 4.30 lakh properties, he added.
- Metro plans parking for 800 vehicles near railway stn Anjaya Anparthi | tnn | Dec 2, 2018, 05:16 IST
Nagpur: With an aim of solving parking problems at the railway station, the MahaMetro has planned to make an arrangement of parking 800 vehicles, 400 each of two and four wheelers, on two lands that is now under the possession of the Maharashtra Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) and Madhya Pradesh State Road Transport (MPSRTC). The two lands are situated on left side of the railway station main building.
The MahaMetro will construct two G+4 buildings on the lands with the requisite parking space. City MP and Union minister Nitin Gadkari had announced Railway Station Premises Redevelopment Project and also sanctioned a fund of Rs 234.21 crore under central road fund (CRF).
MahaMetro official told TOI that parking facility for 800 vehicles would be provided in the two buildings. “175 shops situated below flyover in front of railway station will also be relocated in the two new buildings. Shops will be shifted on the ground floor. Parking will be provided on first and second floor. Decision related to utilization of third and fourth floors is yet to be taken,” he said.
The official also said the MahaMetro initially may create parking space for 600 four wheelers. “Later, after studying requirement, it may decide to increase the space for more four wheelers or two wheelers,” he said.
At present, the parking facility provided by the Railways at the railway station is inadequate. Four wheelers are provided parking facility in front of railway station main building and always fall short. Parking facility for two-wheelers is provided along platform no-1 below Ramjhula in a haphazard manner.
In another development related to the project, the state’s public works department (PWD) has been appointed as nodal agency and the MahaMetro as the implementing agency of PWD for the project.
Collector Ashwin Mudgal said PWD has been appointed as the nodal agency because funds for the project sanctioned under CRF. “Two lands under the possession of MSRTC and MPSRTC are nazul lands. The district administration will transfer the two lands to the PWD. Proposal will be submitted with the state government for leasing out the lands to the PWD once received the proposal from it,” he said.
However, all these procedures are likely to take a long time. Till then, the MahaMetro is planning to demolish two approaches of the flyover and widen the road towards Manas square and Jaistambh square. The MahaMetro has submitted a proposal with the Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) seeking permission to raze the two approaches.
It is said to be a dicey decision for the civic body to give permission to demolish only two approaches of the flyover as it is likely to increase the congestion at the railway station. Entire flyover cannot be demolished now as the NMC general body had passed a resolution to demolish the flyover only after rehabilitation of 175 shops situated below it.
The plan is to widen the road in front of railway station to 24 metre after demolition of the flyover and the shops below it.
- ‘Solar capacity has increased by 370% in last 3 yrs in India’ Manka Behl | tnn | Dec 3, 2018, 05:53 IST
Katowice: It is not known how India’s negotiations at the 24th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP) will be received. Its pavilion, however, has caught the eye of global participants.
Based on the theme of ‘One World, One Sun, One Grid’, the country’s pavilion this year focuses on renewable energy, green cover, energy efficiency among other issues. Two robotic hands, presenting a three-dimensional information on the latest progress on these issues, are one of the key attractions here.
With an intent of promoting cycling as daily transport mode, the pavilion is home to a digital bicycle which takes the rider to the popular streets of New Delhi, highlighting on the way the efforts taken by the government in improving cleanliness, green cover and other environment-friendly measures.
Highlighting India’s target of adding 227 gigawatt (GW) of renewable energy capacity by 2022, the pavilion showcases that the country globally ranks 6th in total solar installed capacity. “The solar capacity has increased by 370% in the last three years. The solar power tariff has reduced by more than 75% using the plug and play model,” displays the information board at the pavilion.
Apart from focusing on clean energy, the focus this time is also on increasing the number of electric vehicles on road. Talking to TOI, Anjan Chatterjee, the national creative director of a firm which designed the pavilion, said, “The pavilion is in sync with the overall thought of transformation that India is witnessing. The idea is to present four main aspects of climate change mitigation: increasing green cover, energy efficiency, e-mobility and clean energy in a way which can be informative but at the same time attractive.”
PWD’s ‘favour’ to co lands Godhani cement road project in trouble Anjaya Anparthi | TNN | Dec 3, 2018, 03:38 IST
Nagpur: The state Public Works Department’s (PWD) alleged favour to controversial Kamptee-based Abhi Engineering has landed the Rs31.51 crore project to concretize Zingabai Takli-Godhani (railway)-Bokara-Koradi in trouble. The Nagpur bench of Bombay high court has stopped the PWD from issuing work order to Abhi Engineering.
Denying the work order to lowest bidder — city-based Aditya Construction Company, PWD had started the process to give the contract to Abhi Engineering, which was the second lowest bidder. Aditya Construction filed a writ petition in the HC. Judges BP Dharmadhikari and SM Modak on October 30 ruled, “No work order shall be issued in the matter.”
This has come to fore from a letter issued by PWD to NGO Yuva Janjagruti Sanghatan. TOI had on November 21 highlighted that the PWD was not executing the project despite tendering process completed two years ago, and the road was in a bad condition, causing mishaps regularly. Along with TOI’s news, a delegation of the NGO headed by Shreyas Ramesh Kale met PWD chief engineer Ulhas Debadwar on November 28, demanding immediate execution of the project. In the reply dated November 30 to the NGO, the PWD said works on the project cannot be started till further HC orders.
The PWD letter also said temporary repair works cannot be done on the road as 4km of total 5.6km fall under the jurisdiction of Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC), and remaining 1.6km under Zilla Parishad (ZP). The PWD added that NMC and ZP can take up repair works.
Union minister Nitin Gadkari had sanctioned funds for the project under Central Road Fund (CRF). Only PWD can execute works under CRF, so it was appointed nodal agency.
First, PWD started tendering process in December 2016, but lowest bidder reportedly did not start the works. The PWD then floated fresh tenders in September this year. Aditya Construction emerged lowest bidder by quoting Rs26.91 crore while Abhi Engineering’s bid was Rs27.12 crore.
A PWD official told TOI Aditya Construction was disqualified since it deposited less than the required additional performance security. “Additional performance security is collected where the bidder submits a bid lower than the estimated cost. We will follow whatever decision the HC gives,” he said.
Partner in Aditya Construction Nilesh Borikar accused PWD officials of acting in nexus with Abhi Engineering. “We deposited security of Rs1.76 crore as per terms and conditions. PWD issued offer letter to Abhi Engineering and also started process to issue work order without any intimation to us. PWD issued letter to us only after we approached the chief engineer. As per HC orders, we can deposit additional security within a week of the opening of financial bids. And, we have given additional security of Rs23.64 lakh in prescribed time period. Abhi Engineering lodged a complaint and PWD officials took its cognisance. It was fixing between PWD officials and Abhi Engineering,” he said.
Denying any nexus with PWD officials, Ajju Vijaywargi of Abhi Engineering said, “We lodged a proper complaint that too in line with norms. We are waiting for the HC orders,” he said.
The HC order said, “By placing reliance upon judgement dated September 6 in writ petition no. 5224 of 2018, submission is, deficit amount of Rs30,000 roughly in submitting additional performance security cannot be seen as material contravention. Contention is, said condition, at the most, may be seen as collateral one,” the HC said.
Abhi Engineering has been in controversy in NMC in almost all projects. A couple of more cases are pending in the HC challenging eligibility of the company and experience certificates issued by Mahagenco.
- NMC to seek Rs690cr from state for widening of roads Anjaya Anparthi | TNN | Dec 4, 2018, 03:47 IST
Nagpur: The Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) has decided to seek funds of Rs689.06 crore under the state government’s Maharashtra golden jubilee urban renewal mega mission for acquisition of lands for widening of six roads. The proposal is to widen parts of Kelibag, Wardha, Kamptee, Bhandara, Model Mill roads and Old Bhandara Road.
Mayor Nanda Jichkar has also organized meeting of the NMC general body on December 10. As per the proposal tabled before the general body, the NMC will require Rs210.35 crore for acquiring land for widening of Old Bhandara Road between Mayo Hospital Square and Sunil Hotel, Rs122.41 crore for Kelibag Road between Central Avenue and CP and Berar College, Model Mills Road from Ramji Pahelwan Square to Model Mills Square, Rs91.75 crore for Bhandara Road between Vaishnodevi Square-Kalamna Market to Pardi octroi naka, Rs75.78 crore for Kamptee Road between Patni Automobiles and Gaddigodam Square and Rs31.94 crore for Wardha Road from Vivekananda Nagar Square to Paul Complex and Sonegaon police station to Hotel Pride Square.
Kelibag, Old Bhandara and Model Mills roads are proposed to be widened for easing congestion in Central Nagpur. Parts of Wardha, Kamptee and Bhandara roads are proposed to be widened for Metro Rail and flyover projects.
Land to be acquired for widening of these roads are private owned properties. The NMC is reeling under financial crisis and hence cannot afford to bear the expenses. The civic body, therefore, decided to seek funds under the state’s scheme.
Another proposal before the general body is to allot 1.5 million litres per day (MLD) water from Ambazari Lake to Ordnance Factory, Ambajhari. “Maharashtra Jeevan Pradhikaran (MJP) supplies water to Ordanance Factory from Vena dam. Water storage in Vena dam is less due to less rains this year. Therefore, MJP and Ordnance Factory have demanded water from Ambazari lake,” the proposal said.
If decision is taken, the NMC will recover at the rate of Rs7.39 per unit from the Ordnance Factory for the water. MIDC Hingna already takes water from Ambazari Lake for industrial use and drinking water supply to its units and a couple of villages. Unfortunately, the NMC does not use lake’s water despite the lake being under its possession. Water in the lake is contaminated but is treated before utilization by MIDC Hingna.
- NMC to plant, maintain trees under cement road phase-III Anjaya Anparthi | TNN | Dec 4, 2018, 03:48 IST
Nagpur: Learning lessons from past mistakes, the Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) has decided to plant as well as maintain trees along roads proposed to be concretized under cement concrete road project phase-III. Water conservation activities too have been incorporated in the project.
NMC chief engineer Ulhas Debadwar told TOI provision of planting and maintaining trees in phase-III has been made in the contract itself. “It will be mandatory for contractors to ensure its compliance and responsibility on the engineers for execution and monitoring. I had arranged a meeting couple of days ago and directed all concerned to ensure cent per cent compliance,” he said.
Executive engineer MG Kukreja said contractors executing cement concrete road works will plant and maintain trees for one year. “Space will be left for planting trees every six metres. Space between two plants can increase up to 10 metres in some stretches. Well grown sapling will be planted,” he said.
Kukreja added 1x1 metre space will be left around existing trees under the project. “Survey and pre-execution works under the project have already been been completed. Concretization work will kick-off within a week,” he said.
Under phase-III project, costing Rs237.28 crore, 42 roads with a length of 42km in 10 packages are to be concretized.
No provision for trees was made by the civic body under its Rs324 crore-cement concrete road project phase-II. Thus, 51 roads with a length of 68km under the project are not having any space for planting trees on both sides. Only 1x1 metre space is left around the existing trees.
Activist Shrikant Deshpande took up the issue with Debadwar and other NMC engineers who incorporated the provision in phase-III.
Deshpande said NMC will also ensure bores in every 50 metre on cement roads under phase-III for rainwater conservation. “Each bore will be 20 feet deep and eight inch in diameter. Bores will help in percolation of rainwater and its conservation. This provision has been made following my efforts,” he said.
Debadwar also said efforts will be made to make space for planting trees on concretized roads under phase-II. “We have directed the contractors to plant trees wherever possible. A plan will be prepared to make spaces wherever possible on roads already concretized under phase-II,” he said.
- Delete reservations of parks from residential areas: Min Proshun Chakraborty | tnn | Dec 4, 2018, 05:36 IST
Nagpur: District guardian minister Chandrashekhar Bawankule on Monday directed the Nagpur Improvement Trust (NIT) and Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) to delete all reservations of gardens and playgrounds from layouts where residential localities have come up.
“Deletion of such reservations should be included in the proposed development plan reservations of the city,” said Bawankule after residents of Suraj Nagar brought this to his notice during his ‘Janata Darbar’.
Bawankule asked additional municipal commissioner Ravindra Thakre to prepare a list of such residential layouts which were reserved for public utilities like parks, grounds etc, along with the officials from NIT. He said both the bodies should try to delete such reservations and propose playgrounds and gardens on government land instead.
The reservations were made in 2001 DPR, while the new DPR will be prepared by 2020, he said.
Bawankule’s ‘Janta Darbar’ was flooded with 259 complaints submitted by common people and delegations. During the four-hour meeting held at zone office in Mangalwari area, Bawankule listened to various grievances of individuals and delegations.
Of the total complaints, Bawankule resolved 33 complaints on the spot. Mayor Nanda Jichkar, ruling party leader Sandip Joshi, MLA Sudhakar Deshmukh and zone’s chairperson Sangeeta Girhe were also present.
Among the grievances submitted, 144 complaints were against the civic body followed by 60 complaints pertaining to NIT.
Not only residents, even elected public representatives, Deshmukh and corporators, also raised many grievances mostly against NIT and NMC.
New Colony residents led by Anil Awade drew the minister’s attention towards encroachment on 1,200sqft NMC land next to the Mangalwari zone office. Despite complaints, the zone office has turned a blind eye. “This land can be used to construct pay-and-use toilet as the area houses many commercial complexes,” said Awade.
The residents also demanded shifting of garbage dumping point from their locality to Mangalwari bazaar area. To this, Bawankule directed the assistant municipal commissioner of the zone, Harish Raut, to raze the encroachment from the NMC land and shift the garbage dumping and transfer point.
Deshmukh highlighted the electrical department’s ‘lackadaisical’ attitude to resolve complaints pertaining to defunct street lights. To this, NMC’s electrical department official informed the guardian minister that all complaints pertaining to non-functioning of street lights will be resolved within a week. Besides, all street lights across the city will be converted into LED based in next six months, they claimed.
Bawankule also lambasted Orange City Water officials for misleading him over a series of complaints pertaining to contaminated water in many localities under Mangalwari zone. The minister told the residents that water pipelines will be laid in around 59 layouts in West Nagpur under Amrut scheme.
The minister assured that all genuine complaints submitted will be resolved within a stipulated period. If required, he assured NMC and NIT of providing funds from the state government.
- Old Airport Road to remain shut for widening, asphalting Anjaya Anparthi | tnn | Dec 4, 2018, 05:38 IST
Nagpur: In a major relief to morning walkers and motorists, MIHAN India Limited (MIL), the authority operating and maintaining the airport, has started to widen and asphalt Old Airport Road. The road is likely to reopen for traffic in the next 10 days.
Abandoned for traffic for decades, Old Airport Road connecting Sahakar Nagar nullah with Airport was opened in June. The number of vehicles on the road has increased to a great extent in the last six months.
The road between Sahakar Nagar nullah and Nagpur Flying Club was narrow with around 5.50m width. There were a lot of problems with vehicles coming from both sides. Convoys of all VVIPs, including chief minister Devendra Fadnavis and Union minister Nitin Gadkari, also passes through the road thereby aggravating the problem.
A large number of walkers use the stretch in the morning as well as evening hours. They too were facing similar problems. The stretch between Nagpur Flying club and airport terminal was in a bad condition. The stretch has potholes and bad surface layer due to which MIL has started asphalting the stretch.
With widening and asphalting works, problems are likely to minimise on the road to a great extent. MIL is likely to get reimbursement of money spent on the works from Maharashtra Airport Development Corporation as the latter is the authority of Old Airport Road.
Earlier, MahaMetro had asphalted the stretch between Sahakar Nagar nullah and Nagpur Flying club for reopening the road for traffic, especially for VVIP movement. MahaMetro came into the picture due to blocks and congestion on Wardha Road caused due to Metro Rail and flyover works. Old Airport road was reopened as an alternative to Wardha Road and also as shortcut for air passengers as well as VVIPs.
Even as vehicular entry has been restricted for the works, walkers have been permitted to use it in the morning and evening.
- Smart building planned for new Pardi police station Anjaya Anparthi | tnn | Dec 4, 2018, 05:42 IST
Nagpur: Smart City special purpose vehicle — Nagpur Smart and Sustainable City Development Corporation Limited (NSSCDCL) — will develop the building of newly-created Pardi police station under Smart City Project. This will become the first police station to be developed with Smart City norms in the city.
East Nagpur MLA Krishna Khopde has got sanction for two new police stations (Pardi and Wathoda) in his constituency. The areas under Pardi police station were under Kalamna police station earlier while Wathoda’s areas were under Nandanvan police station.
Khopde told TOI NSSCDCL has given consent to his proposal of developing the building of Pardi police station under Smart City project. “NSSCDCL will also provide the land in Smart City area for the police station. It will come up at Punapur, and is likely to be a green building with all types of amenities,” he said.
Around 1,743 acre in Pardi, Punapur, Bharatwada and Bhandewadi will be transformed into a Smart City under the Smart City Project.
Khopde said efforts are on to start Pardi and Wathoda police stations from rental premises from January. “I also got approved sprawling one acre land for permanent building of Wathoda police station from Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC). Police department will only have to develop the building. It will come up near the proposed international stadium of Sports Authority of India (SAI) and Symbiosis Outreach Centre at Wathoda. Till completion of permanent buildings, police department will kick-start the two police stations from rental premises. Guardian minister Chandrashekar Bawankule has given necessary directions in this regard to the police department,” he said.
The home department has demarcated areas under Pardi police station on November 29.
Khopde said Pardi and Wathoda police stations will come as a big relief for East Nagpur. “Areas under Kalamna and Nandanwan were spread widely. Citizens as well as police personnel were facing serious problems,” he said.