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Cabinet approves Rs 1000 crore Horticulture Development Project for Himachal

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The Cabinet in its meeting held here today approved World Bank Funded Rs. 1000 crore, HP Horticulture Development Project for the State and in Society mode besides formation of Society at the apex level under the HP Society Registration Act, 2006.

Under the project, the Cabinet also approved creation of Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) to manage the Progeny cum Demonstration Orchards (PCDO’s) and the farms owned or under the possession of Horticulture and other departments, in a society mode by the society to be created under the HP Society Registration Act 2006.

It also approved the handing over the management of PCDO’s of horticulture/ other departments to the SPV on agreed terms and condition through MoU’s to be signed between the SPV and the concerned department.

Stating this in the meeting, Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh said that the function of the societies or SPV formed therein would be to set up modern nurseries and demonstration orchards of various fruits and cultivars, flowers and vegetables and to manage these PCDOs profitably so that the requirement of quality, plant material could meet on regular basis.

The Chief Minister said that the project would help ensuring better post harvest management besides supply chain management and establishing alternative market management and use of information technology in the development of Horticulture Sector in the State besides enhancing horticulture competitiveness at the farm level.

The Cabinet also accorded its approval for development of ropeway projects in Himachal Pradesh. The main projects approved for development are Neugal (Palampur), Bhunter-Bijli Mahadev,

Dharamkot- Triund, Toba-Nainadevi ji, Shahtalai- Deotsidh and Sarahan- Bashal Kanda as per revised RFP document.

The Cabinet also approved Special Purpose Vehicle constituted by the promoter in the name of M/s Manali Ropeway private limited draft concession agreement and the permission to sign agreement with the promoter on the revised project cost as presently proposed Rs 340 crore by the company. It also gave its nod to recover the balance amount of Project Development Success Fee, if any, with interest of 12 percent per annum from the date of signing of concession from the company at the time of submission of final revised Detailed Project Report be approved or not.

The Cabinet also authorized Director Tourism to sign the Palchan-Rohtang Ropeway Project agreement.

Cabinet approved opening of new IPH Sub-Division at Jawlamukhi along with four sections and as many as six posts of different categories.

It also approved up-gradation of Community Health Centre (CHC) Nagrota Bagwan as civil hospital and enhancing its bed capacity to 50 and creation of six posts of different categories in the same. It approved to open PHC at village Khad in Una district.

To add greater variety in the diet of the common man, the Cabinet agreed to invite tenders on pulses under State Subsidy Scheme in three categories of pulses.

In the first category, Rajmah, Rongi and White Channa (Coarse Dals), in the second category Moong, Urd and Black Masar (Sabut Dals) and the third category comprises Dal Chana, Malka and Masri (Dal Bina Chilka)

Cabinet gave its nod to minor amendments in section 10.4.1 and section 10.4.2 in Interim Development Plan of Shimla Planning Area, where change of land use will be done at Administrative Department level. Re-construction of existing buildings on old lines except Heritage buildings shall be permitted provided the façade and architectural features are maintained.

The Cabinet approved Schemes and guidelines for implementation of State Mission on Food Processing.

It also approved creation of National Optical Fiber Network with a view to connect all the Panchayats in the State subjected to the condition that the damaged roads were repaired. It also gave its nod for revised policy for setting up of Mobile Communication Tower for effective quality of services.

It decided to enhance Block Guarantee from Rs. 10 crore to Rs. 13 crore in favour of National Minorities Finance and Development Corporation, New Delhi and Rs. 10 crore to Rs. 12 crore in favour of National Handicapped Finance and Development Corporation, Faridabad with the objective of social, economic and educational up-liftment to the people of Minorities Communities and persons with disabilities below in poverty line in Himachal Pradesh.

Cabinet’s Nod to create /fill as many as 250 posts

To create 40 posts of junior officer Assistants (IT) on contract basis in co-operation department.

Filling of 40 posts of Inspectors (Audit) on contract basis in each of the next three years i.e. 2015-16, 2016-17 and 2017-18 in the department of co-operation.

Filling of 27 posts of class III in district Kinnaur

Filling of seven vacant posts of Food Safety officers in the department of Health Safety and Regulation.

Filling up of 16 posts of Junior Engineers in department of Panchayati Raj on contract basis.
Creation of one post of ACS in IAS cadre of the State.

Creation of one post of computer operator in Town and Country Planning department.

Creation of nine posts of junior office assistant (IT) on contract basis in HP Building and Other Construction Workers Welfare Board.

Creation and Filling of 25 posts of Junior Office Assistant (IT) in Social Justice and Empowerment department

Creation of as many as 30 posts in newly upgraded Tehsils which will include posts of Tehsil Welfare Officers, Junior Office Assistants on contract basis and 10 Daily wagers.

Filling up one vacant post of Mechanic in Ayurveda department on contract basis.

Creation of 50 posts of Multipurpose Workers for Forest Rest Houses/Inspection Huts on contract basis.

The Cabinet approved staffing norms for Sub-Divisions, Tehsils and Sub-Tehsils.

It decided to regularize contractual Medical Officers (General) working in Health Department.

The Cabinet also approved constitution of Waqf Tribunal as per Waqf (amendment) Act 2013 and to seek the concurrence of the Chief Justice of High Court for appointing a District and Session Judge as Chairman of the Tribunal.

The Cabinet also approved regularization of Ayurveda Officers appointed on contract basis under Rogi Kalyan Samitis in Ayurveda department.

It also decided to wave off 90 percent entertainment tax from Kings XI Punjab for the matches played on 15th, 17th and 21st May, 2011 at Dharamshala.

HYDEL PROJECTS

The Cabinet agreed to allot 960 MW Jhangi-Thopan-Powari Hydel Project to M/S Reliance Energy Ltd. Further decided that it Reliance Energy Ltd. Does not accept the offer the project may be advertised a fresh for biding.

The Cabinet approved allotment of 217 Mini and Micro Hydel projects upto 5 MW capacity.

The Cabinet approved restoration of Chahod (2MW) hydel project in district Mandi.

The Cabinet approved rationalization of circle rates to determine stamp duty and registration fee in the State based on distance of land from the roads i.e. Circle rate of land (persquare Meter/per Bigha) will be equal to(=) Base rate of land (per square meter) X (multiplied by) Factor-1, i.e class of land (cultivated/ uncultivated).


Cabinet approved opening of New Industrial Training Institutes and introduction of trades therein

Approval for opening New ITI at Nagrota Bagwan, in district Kangra.

Approval for opening new ITI for WOMEN at Bharari in sub Tehsil Bhararim in district Bilaspur.

Nod was given to open ITI in Dodra Kwar in district Shimla

Approval was accorded for introducing Draughtsman (Civil) trade in Government ITI Dargi in Shimla Rural assembly segment.

To open New ITI at Siari in district Solan.

New ITI at Badressa/ Mohi in Gram Panchayat Chouri, Sarkaghat , district Mandi.

New ITI at Padhar and Katoli in Mandi district.

Regulations and Acts

The Cabinet also accorded approval for amendment in HP Private Medical Educational Institutions (Regulation of Admission and Fixation of Fee) Act, 2006. It was decided to incorporate a new sub-section 6a of section 3 in the Act wherein “in order to ensure common standards for maintaining the excellence of medical education in the State, only the Himachal Pradesh University shall have the exclusive to affiliate private medical colleges set up in the State”.

The Cabinet also agreed upon appointing all Additional Deputy Commissioners and Additional District Magistrates as ‘Administrator’, all Divisional Commissioners as Commissioners and all Sub Divisional Officers (Civil) , all Land Acquisition Collectors of different departments be appointed as Collectors for the purpose of Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Re-settlement Act, 2013.

Earlier, the Chief Minister accorded warm welcome to Health Minister Kaul Singh Thakur who had undergone by-pass surgery. The Chief Minister wished him healthy life.

Misc News/Press Release

Rs 2572 crore for Himachal’s irrigation and drinking water schemes

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HP irrigation and drinking water schemes

Shimla: The State Government today said that it has earmarked an amount of Rs 2572 crore for providing irrigation and drinking water facilities in Himachal Pradesh during the current financial year.

The endeavour, the Government said, was to bring more area under irrigation facility so that farmers could go for crop diversification instead of traditional crops.

The Chief Minister, while addressing a public meeting at Kelodhar in Seraj assembly constituency of Mandi district, provided the information.It is Chief Minister’s first visit to Kelodhar after elections.

Further, it was announced that the Kandha-Bah-Batand road would be strengthened.

Earlier, the Chief Minister performed ‘bhumi pujan’ of Kandha-Bah-Batand road (Phase-II) to be constructed at a cost of Rs. 358.53 lakh.

He laid the foundation stones of IPH Office building and residence at Kelodhar to be constructed at a cost of Rs. 74.36 lakh and of Science Block building of Government Senior Secondary School Kelodhar on which about Rs 1.50 crore would be spent.

The Government announced Rs 15 lakh for Kelodhar Panchayat for various developmental works, Rs 10 lakh each for GP Bara, GP Saroha and GP Parwara. He also announced Rs 3 lakh for Mahila Mandal Kelodhar.

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British-era Bantony Castle Shimla to become Rs. 25 crore cultural centre     

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Bantony Castle Shimla Picture

CM said the building is also an example of beautiful anglo-gothic architecture. However, this fact appears to be incorrect as the Castle is built in the mock-Tudor style

Shimla: As a ray of hope for the Bantony Castle, Shimla, the Himachal Pradesh Government has announced Rs. 25 crores for the renovation of the British-era structure in order to develop as a tourist attraction.

This was stated by Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur while inaugurating the five-day long State level Gram Shilp Mela which was organized by the State Language Art and Culture Department here on May 17, 2018.

Bantony Castle is one of the historic and monumental buildings of Shimla town and has a very rich history. spread over around 20,000 square meter area between Circular Road and Mall Road.

The Chief Minister said the building is also an example of beautiful anglo-gothic architecture. However, this fact appears to be incorrect as the Castle is built in the mock-Tudor style, part chalet and crowned with sloping roofs with mini-towers.

Nevertheless, he further said that since this building was strategically located on the Mall Road thus could be an added attraction for the tourists.

 This complex as a whole would be developed in such a way that it not only becomes a tourist attraction but also a centre of rich cultural diversity of the State.  

The previous Congress Government had, in 2017, announced that it will be turned into a Heritage museum with a restaurant and recreational park.

Artisans from different parts of the State received an opportunity to exhibit their artefacts at the Gram Shipi Mela. The government said it would also organize District level Gram Shilp Melas besides Inter-state Gram Shilp Melas to promote the artefacts of the State.

It was further informed that the State Government has announced a new scheme named ‘Aaj Purani Rahon Se’ for exploring folklores, historic events and cultural tourism in the State. The government has also decided to introduce miniaturized cultural souvenirs of Himachal Pradesh such as musical instruments, Chamba Rumal, Kangra paintings etc.

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Will tar 1100 km roads, construct 600 km new motorable roads, 750 km cross drainage, 35 bridges in 2018: HP Govt

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HP PWD target for 2018

Shimla: During review meeting of Himachal Pradesh Public Works Department held today, the Government informed that it has set up a target of construction of 600 km new motorable roads, providing cross drainage facilities on 750 km road length, metalling and tarring of 1100 km roads, construction of 35 bridges and providing road connectivity to 40 villages during the current financial year.

The Government said all the formalities regarding the allocation of road and bridge projects would be completed within a stipulated period to facilitate work- allocation within 51 days to concerned executing agencies.  

The e-tendering is expected to speed up the process of allocation of projects.

It has been felt that delay in Forest clearances was one of the major bottlenecks for starting of different road and bridge projects. Therefore, the Government would take up the matter with the Union Government to expedite forest clearances for these projects,

said the Chief Minister, who was presiding over the meeting.

It was informed that the target has been fixed to execute 414 works with a total length of 2400 km, under PMGSY with an outlay of Rs 600 crore during the current financial year.

On completion, 150 habitations would be connected with roads. Similarly, the target has been fixed to complete 209 works under Rural Infrastructure Development Fund (RIDF)-NABARD, which include 77 works in Shimla zone, 20 in Mandi Zone, 70 in Kangra zone and 4 in Hamirpur Zone, it was informed.

HPPWD review meeting 2018

During HPPWD review meeting 2018

It was informed that that out of 90 black spots identified in the State, 58 had been rectified and work on remaining black spots was in progress.

The State Government has allocated Rs. 200 crore for maintenance and repair of roads in the State besides Rs. 50 crore additionality for providing drainage facilities on the roads, claimed the Government.

Additional Chief Secretary Manisha Nanda said that 34394 officers and officials were working in the Public Works Department and “were doing their best” to ensure best road connectivity to the people of the State.  

The State today has total 35638 km of roads providing road connectivity to the remotest part of the State, informed the Engineer-in-Chief R.P Verma.

Opposed to the work-culture of the HP PWD, the Chief Minister, who holds Department, is claiming that regular monitoring and inspection of roads and bridges constructed particularly under NABARD, Central Road Fund etc. will be ensured.

 He said that for this, standard quality parameters should be laid down and responsibility of the defaulters must be fixed and strict action taken against the person, which rarely happens.

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