Bureaucratic hassles delaying major projects in J&K: Farooq26 November 2010
The Daily Excelsior
Excelsior Correspondent JAMMU: Union Minister for New and Renewable Energy, Dr Farooq Abdullah today said ‘bureaucratic hassles’ was one of the major reasons behind slow development of any region or State. Dr Abdullah said major power projects, which are hanging in between were not being completed in stipulated time period as bureaucratic hassles was the major cause for delay in completion of these projects. He also held 'political lobbies' responsible for destruction of the States and suggested all of them to understand the urgency of the projects for national interest. Talking to the media-persons at the sidelines of closing ceremony of 8th University-Industry Council Symposium on ‘Industry-Academia collaboration for the development of India with focus on Northern region’ in Jammu University, the Minister said, 'The projects handed over to the Government of India years back are still awaiting completion and this reflects the 'sincerity' of the Government.’’ He revealed that as the then Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister, he handed over few power projects to the Central Government but over a decade has passed and none of them has been completed which are supposed to be completed in five-years time. The Union Minister also said he went to former Union Minister for Power, Kumaramangalam (during the regime of NDA headed by Atal Bihari Vajpayee) with a proposal of nine power projects in Jammu and Kashmir and sought help in terms of ‘counter-guarantee’ for generating funds from international markets on lower rate of interest. 'The Government of India had refused to give us counter-guarantee and instead it came up with a proposal suggesting us to develop two projects, Baghliar and Sawalakote hydroelectric projects, while the remaining seven projects were to be completed by its agencies. We agreed to the Central Government proposal despite stiff resistance within the State,’’ Dr Abdullah added. He further said the projects were to be developed on Build Operate Own and Transfer (BOOT) basis but none was transferred to Jammu and Kashmir. 'The Salal Project, which was scheduled to be completed in five years, is still under process as over 17 years have passed but the projects in Uri and in Kishtwar, which were being catered by the foreign agencies, were timely completed and functioning,’’ Dr Farooq added. The other panelists in this session included Prof Pradip Narayan Ghosh, Vice Chancellor Jadavpur University, Jatinder Singh, Executive Director NHPC, Prof G M Bhat, Department of Geology, University of Jammu, Prof Farooq Mir Department of Physics, University of Kashmir and Dr Ashan Absor, vice president, Thermax Limited, New Delhi. The two day symposium covered panel discussions on areas like Exploring University Industry Partnership Models, Tourism and Environment Promoting Eco tourism, Using the rich bio diversity of the Northern States to create a sustainable Biotech Industry base, Role of IT-ICT in enhancing Higher Education and accelerating growth of the sector, Sustainable energy and clean technologies as pilots for the rest of the world to follow. The panel on University Industry Partnership Models included Prof. Riyaz Punjabi, Vice chancellor University of Kashmir, Devender Rana, Political Advisor to CM , Dr N R Banerjea, Chairman, WEBEL, Dr I K Bhat, Prof Motilal Nehru National Institute of Technology, Arvind, Chief Strategy Officer, XELLECT IP Solutions and Neeraj Mishra, president Essar Group. The session was coordinated by Prof Neelu Rohmetra, Director, Business School. The session on Ecotourism was chaired by Nawang Rigzin Jora, Minister for Tourism and Culture. Other panelists in the session included Lal Chand, Chairman, J&K Pollution Control Board, Prof S C Bagri, Dean and Director, HNB Garwal University, Shantmanu, Commisioner-Secretary Forest Department, Sutheentha Babu, The National Institute of Water Sports and Babar Afzal, CEO, IDEA AXE Consulting Pvt Ltd. The session on Biodiversity was chaired by Prof R N K Bamzai,Vice Chancellor SMVD University, Prof I A Hamal, Vice Chancellor Baba Gulam Shah Badshah University, Dr R Vishvakarma, Director IIIM, Jammu and Dr D S engupta Senior Adviros CII. The coordinator for the session was Prof Tripathai Zoology Department. The session on IT-ICT was chaired by Swapan Bhattacharya, Director, NIT, Durgapur and was coordinated by Prof Devanand, Department of Computer Science, Prof Varun Sahni,Vice Chancellor University of Jammu presided all the technical sessions, Dr P S Pathania, Registrar and Prof Kuldeep Sharma ,Director, Directorate of Internal Quality Assurance, University of Jammu also participated in all the technical sessons.