Feb 23, 2014

BJP game if JD (U) supports ‘rail roko’



PATNA: BJP leader and former deputy CM Sushil Kumar Modi has said his party is ready to extend support to JD (U)'s Bihar bandh on March 2 to press for special state status to Bihar provided the latter supports the BJP-sponsored 'rail roko' agitation for the same on February 28. 

CM Kumar has sought support of all parties for the bandh. "Instead of seeking support of all parties for JD (U)'s bandh call, the CM should have convened a meeting of all parties and taken a joint decision on the course of agitation for special status. It would have had greater impact on the Centre had the bandh call been given jointly by all parties," Modi told newsmen on Saturday and accused Kumar of weakening the state's fight for the special status by "hijacking" the issue and trying to make it a demand of JD (U). 

Modi alleged Kumar's decision to defer the bandh by a day to March 2 seemed to be aimed at "disturbing" Narendra Modi's rally at Muzaffarpur on March 3. Kumar had first called the bandh on March 1. 

Modi also pointed out Kumar had welcomed the report of Raghuram Rajan committee and repeatedly said he would not accept anything less than the special status to Bihar. But the fact is, the committee, in its recommendation, abolished the very concept of special state status, Modi said. 

The BJP leader said when the CM was patting himself terming the Raghuram committee report as "an achievement", one of the committee members Shaibal Gupta had given a 10-page note of dissent. "If the report was an achievement, why Gupta, who was representing the interests of Bihar in the committee, gave a note of dissent?" he asked. 

Modi also quoted Gupta's note as saying "it seems there is a concerted strategy not only to deny Bihar the special status but also to deny its legitimate demand by putting it on a higher rank in the underdevelopment index." Gupta had said the committee report was against the interest of Bihar, Modi said.
Source..times of india

Oman Rail prequalification criteria revealed


A 171km segment of rail from Sohar City to Al Buraimi on Oman?s border with the United Arab Emirates will be built first.

Oman Rail has set stringent minimum qualification criteria for the design and build package of its national railway project.

Contractors seeking to prequalify for the package must have experience in the final design and construction of a single railway infrastructure project in the last five years with a total project construction value of more than $1bn (OMR 385mn).

They should also have undertaken the detailed design and construction of at least one railway tunnel or road tunnel of at least 500 metres in the last five years.

Prospective bidders should also have experience in the final detailed design of railway civil infrastructure for at least one major railway project in the last five years covering at least 200 kilometres (km) of double track (with design speed of at least 160 km/hour).

The selected contractor will undertake a detailed design based on the preliminary design submitted by Italferr, the Italian rail consultancy appointed as the Preliminary Design Consultant (PDC) for the national railway project.

The final detailed design will cover the alignment and earthworks, railway track, tunnels, bridges and other structures, operations and maintenance centre, ancillary facilities, railway stations and utilities.

Civil works constitute a key component of the design and build package, covering all the required earthworks, track work, switches and crossings, construction of railway depots, freight and operational facilities, railway maintenance compounds, highways and access roads, drainage channels, railway embankments and sand mitigation zones.

Also as part of its remit, the design and build contractor will build all structures, including railway tunnels, under-bridges and over-bridges, camel bridges, culverts and crossings for pipelines and utilities.

Facilities for freight, loading and unloading, operations and maintenance buildings, are included as well.

The railway technology systems package for this segment will be executed by the nominated prequalified contractor who will be subcontracted by the main contractor. Integration, testing and commissioning of the network are also the responsibility of the main contractor.

Targeted for initial implementation is a 171km segment from Sohar City to Al Buraimi on Oman’s border with the United Arab Emirates.
Source..construction week online

Ghorpadi Rail Over Bridge: MoD refuses land, irked residents to boycott polls



At Ghorpadi, residents have had to deal with long traffic jams because of the closure of two adjacent railway gates on a daily basis. (IE Photo: Arul Horizon)

The Defence Ministry’s latest communication, which says the Army does not recommend the transfer of defence land for the construction of Rail Over Bridge (ROB) at Ghorpadi has irritated residents, who have had to deal with long traffic jams because of the closure of two adjacent railway gates on a daily basis.

As a result, the citizen’s committee pressing for the construction of the bridge has threatened to file a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in the Bombay High Court and simultaneously boycott the general elections 2014 to protest against those public representatives who, the committee claims, have been unable to get the bridge constructed.

A letter by Defence Minister Antony dated October 2013, which added to the agitation of the committee, said, “In so far as the proposal of transfer of defence land at Ghorpadi, district Pune, for construction of Rail Over Bridges (ROB) at Ghorpadi- Mundhwa crossing is concerned, the Army authorities have not recommended the proposal. A Board of Officers constituted to examine the proposal, however, recommended that in case of inescapable requirement of ROB, the alternative option for construction of ROB in the area of B T Kawade Road may be considered.”

The agitated residents have however been feeling betrayed, given that a Parliamentary committee had in September visited the spot and promised that the matter will be resolved. Lt Col (retd) M K Gupta Ray, convenor of Ghorpadi Mundhwa Rail Over Bridge on Saturday said, “The ROB is still a distant dream for locals here. With the recent inclusion of 13 trains, the total number of trains is 207 on a daily basis.”

The committee is further concerned by the fact that the latest addition of the Pune-Daund local train is expected to add yet another 40 trains to the existing 207. The committee, which backs its claims with the data obtained from Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC), has calculated the estimated duration of gate closure at 10.30 hours a day for gate no 586 and 18 hours a day for gate no 68.

“So during the remaining hours, the gates cater to 50,000 plus vehicles that commute on the road daily. It takes over 40 minutes for the choked traffic to clear every time the rail gates open and when they close, long queues are formed. One has to take six kilometres of long travel via Koegaon Park or Mundhwa to avoid these crossings given that Army has closed four other roads in the area as well,” said Sanjay Kawde, activist.

The two ROBs, work order for which was passed by PMC in 2010 at Rs 68 crore, require about 5.16 acres of land- which is under the control of Army authorities. But the residents claim that in 2010 itself, the PMC had resolved to exchange 5.16 acres of land with one Mudliyar School against the defence land that would be acquired for the construction of ROB.

“We fail to understand what these ‘sensitive’ security establishments in this zone are – more so, when the so-called security stands breached by high rises in Koregaon Park and Kalyaninagar,” said Gulabrao Vatare, 75. “We now plan to file a PIL and have decided to boycott the general elections. We are a part of two Lok Sabha constituencies- Shirur and Pune City. We plan to approach local residents and ask them to not vote,” said Alok Pandit, entrepreneur.

Source.Rail News

Rs.10 crore for Panniyankara rail overbridge



The monorail project, estimated at Rs.1,991 crore, would be developed in two phases; Phase-I will be from Medical College to Mananchira, and Phase-II from Mananchira to Meenchanda.

The government has sanctioned the release of Rs.10 crore for the construction of the Panniyankara rail over-bridge, a vital part of the monorail project in the city.

Signalling implementation of the first step towards realising monorail as an effective means of public transport, the government ordered the immediate release of the amount to the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) to undertake the work on the Panniyankara bridge.

The monorail project, estimated at Rs.1,991 crore, would be developed in two phases. Phase-I will be from Medical College to Mananchira, and Phase-II from Mananchira to Meenchanda.

So far, the DMRC, a consultant for the project, has completed all the groundwork ahead of commencement of the project.

15 stops

The monorail will have 15 stops along the 14.2 km elevated stretch from Medical College to Meenchanda in the city. The Panniyankara bridge work is estimated to cost Rs.76.16 crore.

It is one of the five major projects intended to accelerate Kozhikode’s development.

The present allocation of Rs.10 crore follows a letter of August 28, 2013, from the Principal Advisor, DMRC Ltd. The letter had, in fact, requested grant of Rs.20 crore to “meet immediate commitments” in the construction of the bridge.

Recently, Panchayat and Social Welfare Minister and Kozhikode south MLA M.K. Muneer, while participating in a face-to-face programme on completion of 1,000 days in office by the Congress-led United Democratic Front government, indicated that the government had given its nod for the release of the sum.

The Panniyankara bridge is also listed among the five major railway projects meant to accelerate Kozhikode’s development.

Other projects

The others named by the government include the Elathur underpass, Pavangad-Puthiappa Road overbridge, Vadakkumpad underpass, and an over-bridge at the cramped Fourth Gate on P.T. Usha Road.

Though budgetary provisions have been made for Rs.1.7 crore for Elathur underpass, Rs.3.66 crore for the over-bridge on Pavangad-Puthiappa Road, Rs.1.98 crore for Vadakkumpad underpass and Rs.10 crore for the over-bridge at Fourth Gate, work is yet to start.
Source.Rail News

 

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