Elevated Corridor to come up for Srinagar City MRTS, DPR by Jun 30

TNN Bureau. Updated: 6/9/2019 11:37:13 AM Front Page

SRINAGAR: Adding to the scenic beauty of the Valley, the government will build an elevated corridor for possible induction of Metro in the ambitious Mass Rapid Transit System (MRTS) for the Srinagar City, even as the Detailed Project Reports (DPRs) for both capital cities’ Mass Rapid Transit Systems will be ready by end of this month.

This was decided by the Governor Satya Pal Malik-headed State Administrative Council (SAC)—equivalent to Cabinet in popular government- which met here, along with several other important policy decisions.

With Malik in chair and his Advisors-K Skandan, Vijay Kumar, Khurshid Ahmad Ganai, K K Sharma and Chief Secretary, BVR Subrahmanyam in attendance, the SAC deliberated upon the various proposals submitted by Administrative departments for its consideration and approved a number of significant cases, including appointment of Administrators and payment of Honorarium of elected sarpanchs and Panchs for unconstituted Halqa Panchayats, bringing under one umbrella the implementation of Social Welfare schemes, besides transferring 28 hectares of forest land for undertaking developmental projects of public importance in the Railways, PMGSY, and Energy sectors.

1- Appointment of Administrators for un-constituted Halqa Panchayats
2-Implementation of Social Welfare schemes brought under one umbrella
3-28 hectares forest land transferred for various development projects"

The SAC was today given a detailed presentation on the Srinagar Mass Rapid Transit Corridor proposals by the Housing & Urban Development Department (H&UDD).

The need for developing Mass Transit Corridor in Srinagar City is being increasingly felt, owing to inadequate capacity of the existing roads within the city to cater to the ever increasing volume of traffic moving in and out of the city, not up to the mark bus services, traffic congestion and the shrinking walking strips to name a few.

The ambitious Mass Rapid Transit Corridor Project is a major initiative of the Government to address this inadequacy and keeping in view the future requirements of transportation & mobility in the city.

Various elevated, underground and integrated corridor proposals were critically analyzed during the presentation in terms of feasibility, suitability and other merits/de-merits besides the finances involved.
Broadly, the Srinagar Mass Rapid Transit Corridor proposals envisage phase wise development of various corridors connecting the city extremities with each other with many in between boarding and de-boarding stations.

After considering various options, the SAC approved the ‘Elevated Corridor Option’ for Srinagar Mass Rapid Transit Corridor, deemed to be the best option.

“SAC further advised the Housing and Urban Development Department that wherever feasible, the Elevated Corridor shall be at ground level and designed in a manner as would add to the aesthetic value of the surrounding landscape,” an official spokesman said.

The DPRs for both Srinagar and Jammu Mass Rapid Transit Systems will be ready by June, 30, 2019, he added.

In another important decision, the SAC approved the appointment of Administrators as per prescribed procedure, to be initiated by the Rural Development & Panchayati Raj Department and payment of Honorarium of elected sarpanchs and Panchs, as notified by the Government for such Halqa Panchayats which have not been constituted.

It is pertinent to mention that Section 9 (1) of the Jammu and Kashmir Panchayati Raj (Amendment) Act, 1989 provides for the appointment of Administrators for such Halqa Panchayats which cannot be constituted due to difficulty in holding the election of the members or failure to elect such members at two successive elections or any sufficient reason whatsoever. Therefore, it has been felt expedient to appoint administrator for Halqa Panchayats which have not been constituted, for performing such duties as specified in the schedule I-A, I-B and I-C including other functions contained in the J&K Panchayati Raj (Amendment) Act, and Rules made there under.

The Administrator appointed shall hold office for a period not exceeding 06 months and the Halqa Panchayat shall be deemed to be duly constituted after the appointment of the Administrator under the provisions of the Act.

A Gazetted officer of the department of Agriculture Production, Horticulture, School Education, Social Welfare, Revenue, Industries (Handloom & Handicrafts) can be appointed as Administrator for such a Halqa Panchayat. The District Development Commissioner will be the designated authority to work out the number of such Halqa Panchayats which have not been constituted and submit the proposal for appointment of any officer of the above departments as Administrator preferably one Administrator for ten Halqa Panchayats.

The notification of appointment of an administrator will be issued by the Rural Development & Panchayati Raj department. The Administrator so appointed will be bound to consult elected Sarpanches or Panches of the Halqa Panchayats during the process of decision making, planning and utilization of funds.

The Panches and Sarpanches in such Halqa Panchayat will be entitled to the honorarium as fixed by the Government i.e Rs. 2500 for a Sarpanch and Rs. 1000 for a Panch.

The proposal will help strengthen the grass root democracy, make it vibrant and enable all Halqa Panchayats to carry out their assigned functions as enunciated in the Jammu and Kashmir Panchayati Raj (Amendment), Act 1989.

The SAC also accorded sanction to the creation of one post of Director General, Women & Child Development in the Social Welfare Department. Pertinent to mention here is that following the creation of a separate department of Women and Child Development in Government of India way back in 2006, several state governments have created separate departments to specifically look into issues related to women and child development.

Presently, the social welfare schemes in Jammu & Kashmir are looked after by two Directorates, namely, Directorate of Social Welfare Kashmir and Directorate of Social Welfare Jammu. Further, the issues related to women and child development are being addressed through the various verticals of the Social Welfare Development including Mission Directorate of ICDS, Mission Directorate of ICPS, Project Directorate of POSHAN Abhiyaan, Mission Directorate of State Resource Centre for Women Jammu and Kashmir State Council for Rehabilitation of Widows, Orphans, Handicapped and Old Persons (Victims of Militancy), Jammu and Kashmir State Women’s Development Corporation, Jammu and Kashmir State Commission for Women.

The High Court of J&K in the PIL No. 09/2013 titled ‘Court on its own Motion Vs State of J&K and Others’, asked the State Government to consider setting up of a separate department of women & child development like in other states to plan and implement programmes for children. Pursuant to the directions of the High Court issued vide order dated 14.09.2018, the Social Welfare Department decided to propose a separate Directorate of Women and Child Development to be headed by the Director General, Women and Child Development. The post of Director General, Women and Child Development shall be created in a scale equivalent to the Super Time Scale of the Jammu & Kashmir Administrative Service and manned either by an Officer of the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) or Jammu & Kashmir Administrative Service (JKAS) or Common Pool Cadre. Further, Mission Directorate of ICDS will continue to function as Project Director, POSHAN Abhiyaan and Mission Director ICPS, both will report to Director General, Women and Child Development.

The supporting staff of the Directorate of Women and Child Development will be made through internal adjustment/deployment.

The creation of a dedicated Department of Women & Child Development will help in evolving plans, policies, strategies and approaches for achieving desired goals with focus on percolation of benefits to women and children, mobilization of resources and convergence of common programmes for upliftment and development of women and children. This will contribute towards robust monitoring of laws/schemes/programmes relating to women and children in the state.

The SAC also approved utilization of 28 hectares of Forest land in various parts of the state for undertaking developmental projects of public importance in the Railways, PMGSY, and Energy sectors.

The utilization of Forest land was approved in pursuance to the recommendations of the 113th Forest Advisory Committee (FAC) meeting held on 11.03.2019.

The proposals approved included use of forest land for up-gradation of Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramulla Rail Link Project, development of infrastructure by JAKEDA and construction of PMGSY roads viz Bandhole to Upper Pattangarh in Udhampur Forest Division, Bhugtrain to Lower Panjgrain in Ramnagar Forest Division Ghan to Chandali in Kishtwar Forest Division, Dubigali to Nalinikka in Udhampur Forest Division, Bugrana to Kalchanda in Kishtwar Forest Division and TOI Dawar Tulail Kashpat to Refugee 02 in Bandipora Forest Division etc.

Work on these projects could not be started till date due to pending forest clearance. By virtue of the SAC decision today, work on all these projects will be started leading to developmental impetus in the rail, road and energy sectors in the state.

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