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Tuesday, January 20, 2015

CM raises assets’ division issue pending between UP, state

Dehradun, January 20
Uttarakhand Chief Minister Harish Rawat raised several important issues related with the state during his interaction Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh at the central zone chief ministers’ conference held at Lucknow on Monday. Chief Minister Harish Rawat during the meeting raised the issue of division of liabilities and assets pending between Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand and to sign the MOU of Jamrani Dam at the earliest.
CM Harish Rawat requested the Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh to release Rs 50 crore for police modernisation, Rs 150 crore for modernisation of prisons and a sum of Rs 2000 crore as Green Bonus to Uttarakhand. He said that despite the Reorganisation Act, the liabilities and assets have not been divided between Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh. The issue of division of assets of irrigation department includes 88 canals, 6 dams/ barrages, 13813.433 hectare land, 4027 residential buildings and 357 non-residential buildings.
He said that during a meeting with the Union Government it was decided that the 41 canals which are completely in the geographical boundary of Uttarakhand must be transferred to the state but this has not been implemented till date. Similarly, transfer of 6 dams/ water bodies in Uttarakhand are yet to be transferred to the state. He said that most of these assets are in relation to Haridwar district and it would be beneficial if these are transferred to the state before Ardh Kumbh Fair to be held in January 2016.
Harish Rawat said that the National Ganga Basin Authority has but a ban on several important hydel projects such as Pala Maneri Project, Bhairaghati Project and Lohari Naag Paala project. Besides this, Nand Prayag Langasu, Tamaklata, Bavla Nand Prayag, Kotli Bhel 1 and 2 and other important projects are pending since they have not received an NOC by the Environment and Forest Ministry. The loss incurred by the state government due to this is Rs 1650 crore which must be compensated by the Central Government.
The Environment and Forest Ministry had declared Bhagirathi Watershed area of 4179.59 sq km as environmentally sensitive zone. Before releasing this notice, the locals and the state government were not taken into confidence. According to the prior notification, 40 km area was declared as sensitive zone, but when the final notification was prepared, the area was increased hundred times. He alleged that the one-sided decision was against the norms and has increased problems for the locals. He demanded that decision must be withdrawn and rectified.
He added that the ban on 25 MW hydel project must be withdrawn and such one-sided decisions should not be taken. The CM said that the state government had sent a project file to approve Rs 55 crore for preparations of the upcoming Ardh Kumbh fair to strengthen security and other arrangements which should be approved at the earliest. The state government also awaits sanction of Rs 158.08 crore for construction of prisons and strengthening of security system in the present jails.
The CM appealed to the union minister to grant maximum money as Green Bonus. The CM said that ‘’our state shares its boundaries with two countries. Even the Railways of the state are not developed. It has a length of 345 km. There is a need to develop the route of Rishikesh- Karnaprayag, Tanakpur- Bageshwar and Bageshwar- Karnaprayag. The Uttarakhand railways must also receive financial aid from the Centre.’’
The state government has appealed the Centre to give a budget to the state government to develop disaster-affected villages on the lines of smart villages. This will also resolve migration issues.

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