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Madhya Pradesh

Modi invokes Vajpayee's vision, says govt. wants to create jobs for youth in Kashmir

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Tuesday his government would take forward former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee's vision of "Insaniyat, Jamahooriyat, Kashmiriyat" forward in Jammu & Kashmir and appealed to the youth of the valley to come forward and help turn the state into "heaven on earth".

 
Kashmiri boys should hold laptops in their hands, not stones: Modi
Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said his government would take forward former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee's vision of "Insaniyat, Jamahooriyat, Kashmiriyat" forward in Jammu & Kashmir and appealed to the youth of the valley to come forward and help turn the state into "heaven on earth".
 
Addressing a public meeting at the birthplace of freedom fighter Chandrashekhar Azad at Bhabra in Madhya Pradesh, where he flagged off a "Tiranga Yatra" to launch the 70th Freedom Year Celebrations, he said every Indian loved Kashmir and wished to visit Kashmir.
 
Mr. Modi said a few misguided elements were attempting to spoil the great traditions of Kashmir.
 
He said the Union Government wanted to create employment opportunities for the youth of Kashmir. He said Kashmir wanted peace and the people of Kashmir wanted to earn more through tourism. 
 
He said both the Centre and the Jammu & Kashmir government were attempting to find a solution to all problems through development. 
 
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Mr. Modi recalled that Mahatma Gandhi, the Father of the Nation, had given the call for the British to Quit India this very day.
 
He urged people to remember those who gave their lives so that the nation could breathe the air of freedom. 
 
He said it was his privilege to visit the birthplace of Chandrashekhar Azad. "People like him inspire us to work for the nation," he added. 
 
The Prime Minister said that people who did not have a chance to lay down their lives for the nation should take the opportunity now to live for the nation. He said a nation moved forward on the strength of its people, their aspirations, and their hard work. 
 
He said the need of the hour was for all to work together with a common resolve to take the nation to new heights. He said the Indian tricolour united the people, and inspired them to rewrite India's destiny.
 
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Railways sign agreement for redevelopment, modernisation of Habibganj station in Bhopal

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The Indian Railway Stations Development Corporation (IRSDC) and the Bansal Group have signed an agreement for the redevelopment and modernisation of the Habibganj railway station in Bhopal.
 
The agreement was signed in the presence of Railways Minister Suresh Prabhu at Rail Bhavan here yesterday.
 
The Habibganj station would now be the first station to be redeveloped. It is one of the eight railway stations which have been allocated to IRSDC by the Ministry of Railways. 
 
Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Prabhu said Indian Railways needed more revenues as the two existing sources -- passenger fares and freight -- were not sufficient. He said the agreement would help improve the economic condition of the Railways as commercial space that will become available at the modernised station would augment revenue.
 
He said similar redevelopment projects would be taken up at stations such as Surat and Gandhinagar in Gujarat and Bijwasan and Anand Vihar in Delhi.
 
An official press release said IRSDC had issued the letter of acceptance (LoA) on June 7 to the selected bidder, a consortium of Bansal Construction Works Pvt. Ltd and Prakash Asphalting & Toll Highways (India) Ltd. The consortium has formed a Special Purpose Company named Bansal Pathways Habibganj Pvt Ltd which will implement this project.
 
The total estimated cost of the redevelopment project for Habibganj station is Rs. 100 crore, whereas the estimated cost of commercial development is approximately Rs. 350 crore. IRSDC has hired the services of leading legal, financial and architectural consultants to operationalize this project. 
 
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The developer is mandated to complete the construction of the railway station within three years and after the redevelopment there will be dedicated approach roads along with municipal roads to ensure easy entry and exit along with convenient parking provisions, without any traffic congestion in the city roads. 
 
It is planned that, like modern airports, Habibganj Railway station will have dedicated pick-up and drop-off parking facilities for station users. To avoid any congestion or confusion, there will be segregation between arriving and departing passengers.  The station also will be easily accessible to differently abled passengers. Safety of passengers and other users of the station have also been kept in mind. The station will comply with NFPA (National Fire Protection Act) to mitigate any fire mishap at a public place.In case of an emergency, the station premises is planned to be evacuated within 4 minutes and passengers can reach the respective designated points of safety in 6 minutes. The station will also promote the use of environment friendly practices. 
 
To ensure cleaner energy from renewable and non-conventional energy, solar energy generation will be provided in the station premises. Enough catering/food stalls and public conveniences at affordable rates are designed to be set up at places easily accessible to both on-board and travelling passengers.
 
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Railways launch Tiger Express train from Delhi to Bandhavgarh, Kanha

Minister of Railways Suresh Prabhu yesterday flagged off the inaugural run of the Tiger Express, a semi-luxury train that will take tourists from Delhi to the world famous Bandhavgarh and Kanha National Parks in Madhya Pradesh.
 
An added bonus for the tourists will be a trip to the Dhuadhar Waterfall in Bedhaghat near Jabalpur.
 
The train, which was announced in the Railway Budget for 2016-17, was flagged from the Safdarjung Station here by Mr. Prabhu through video-conferencing from Mumbai.
 
The tourist train will be operated by the public sector Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC).
 
The train will have a 5 days/6 nights itinerary, starting from Delhi Sufdarjung railway station here and covering Katani, Jabalpur, Bandhavgadh, Kanha. 
 
The Kanha National Park is known for the presence of tigers, Swamp Deer, and the Barasingha. It is also recognized as the source of inspiration for renowned writer Rudyard Kipling's famous novel, “The Jungle Book”.
 
The Bandhavgarh National Park is known for its biodiversity. The density of the tiger population at Bandhavgarh is one of the highest known in India. The park has a large breeding population of leopards and various species of deer. 
 
A press release from the Railways said the itinerary includes three Tiger Safaris, giving the tourists opportunities to spot the majestic wild cats in their natural environs and a spectacular view of wildlife.
 
Regular monthly trips of the fully air-conditioned train, which has been vinyl-wrapped with motifs of wildlife, are to begin from October, 2016 onwards.
 
IRCTC has been conducting a variety of tour programmes like the  ‘Desert Circuit’ in Rajasthan and the ‘Heritage Circuit’ in North India. This is for the first time that the Indian Railways have forayed into the exciting and fascinating world of wildlife tourism.
 
Dhuadhar Waterfall in Bedhaghat
Dhuadhar Waterfall in Bedhaghat
The package includes journey by the exclusive semi-luxury air- conditioned train, accommodation in air-conditioned rooms of three star equivalent hotels for three nights (one night in Bandhavgarh and two nights in Kanha in Mogli Resorts), sightseeing and road transportation by AC vehicles, buffet meals, game safaris, inter-city transfers and travel insurance.
 
This is also the first semi-luxury train on a tourist circuit having a dining car. The objective behind it is to facilitate frequent interactions among travellers during the travel. No other semi-luxury train is equipped with a dining car.
 
The itinerary has a tariff structure starting from Rs 38,500. For travelling in 1AC, tariff has been fixed at Rs 49,500 for single occupancy, Rs 45,500 for double occupancy, Rs 44,900 for triple occupancy and Rs 39,500 for child with bed (5-11 years).
 
The fares for those travelling in AC 2-tier is Rs 43,500 for single occupancy, Rs 39,000 for double occupancy, Rs 38,500 for triple occupancy and Rs 33,500 for child with bed (5-11 years).
 
However, these rates are valid for Indian citizens only. An additional surcharge of Rs. 4,000 per person will be charged from foreigners for the Safari booking at Bandhagarh and Kanha.
 
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Highway through "Mowgli Land" gets Rs. 186 crore to take care of wildlife

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Admirers of 'Mowgli”, the boy hero of “Jungle Book” by 19th century writer Rudyard Kipling, will soon be able to drive through the forest that is believed to have been the setting for the novel without disturbing the tiger population in the Pench-Kanha Tiger Corridor during a road widening project.
 
The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has sanctioned Rs. 186 crore for wildlife mitigation measures to take care of any possible adverse impact on the animals in Pench and Kanha tiger reserves. 
 
The work involves widening of the NH-7 which cuts across the “tiger corridor” at the Madhya Pradesh/Maharashtra border-Mansar section , an official press release said here yesterday.
 
The total length of the project from Nagpur to Madhya Pradesh/Maharashtra border is 117 km. Out of this, the work of four-laning of about 79 km, which includes the Nagpur Bypass, Kamptee- Kanhan Bypass and Kanhan-Mansar section of existing NH-7, was completed in July 2012.
 
However, the work from Mansar to the states' borders could not be taken up for want of tree felling permission and finalisation of mitigation measures to be adopted for wildlife habitat in and around the stretch.
 
With all the statutory clearances in place, NHAI has resumed civil works on this stretch. As per the recommendations of the Wildlife Institute of India and the National Tiger Conservation Authority, also endorsed by the High Court at Nagpur, NHAI is providing elaborate mitigation measures on the stretch.
 
The measures include three elevated sections of 750m, 750m and 300m length, so that wildlife can move across the highway alignment following their natural paths. Besides these, six other wildlife crossings of different dimensions are also being provided. 
 
The funds sanctioned is only a part of the amount to be spent for the purpose, the release added.
 
The much acclaimed Jungle Book's popularity continues well into the 21st century, the latest being a Hollywood film by Walt Disney in various 3-D formats. The story is about Mowgli, a foundling boy raised by wolves in the jungle, who comes in contact with various characters like Shere Khan, the tiger, Bagheera, the panther, Bhalu the bear and other characters and have several adventures.
 
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CCEA okays Bina-Katni third line project of West Central Railway

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The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) yesterday gave the go-ahead for the construction of a third railway line between Bina and Katni in Madhya Pradesh on the West Central Railway (WCR) at an estimated cost of Rs. 2,478.23 crore and expected completion cost of Rs. 2,917.06 crore. 
 
The 278.7 km long railway line is expected to be completed in five years, an official press release said.
 
The project will provide a third line to the thermal power plants in the area and cater to the increasing freight traffic in the region. The districts of Sagar, Damoh and Katni would also be benefited by the project.
 
Bina-Katni is a critical and busy section of WCR, serving coal rakes for thermal power plants at Chhabra Gugur and Jhalawar in Rajasthan and petroleum, oil and lubricants (POL) traffic for Mahadevkhedi in Madhya Pradesh. The present capacity utilization of the section is 136%. 
 
In view of the growing traffic and detention of crossing traffic, a third line betwen Bina and Katna has become necessary, the release added.
 
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AAI land to be leased for establishing Centre for Perishable Cargo at Indore airport

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The Union Cabinet today gave its approval for leasing out of Airports Authority of India (AAI) land measuring 1500 sqm. to  M.P. Warehousing Logistics Corporation (MPWLC) for establishing the Centre for Perishable Cargo (CPC) at Indore airport, Indore as per the resolution made by AAI Board. 
 
The Centre will be a state-of-the-art exit point for perishables from the State. It will provide a world class facility under one roof to cater to all requirements of the traders and maintain the quality of produce. This facility is to be created by MPWLC under the public private partnership (PPP) mode. 
 
The creation of the facility is expected to cater to the employment needs of the local population and has significant employment potential. A total number of 113 persons will be required to manage the CPC, an official press release said.
 
The release said there is huge demand for export of pharmaceuticals, poultry products and horticulture products in Malwa region of Madhya Pradesh. 
 
The leasing out of the land will enable the Madhya Pradesh government to promote the agriculture and horticulture sectors of the state.
 
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Modi, Sirisena attend Convention on Universal Message of Simhastha at Ujjain

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Sri Lanka President Maithripala Sirisena were among those who attended the International Convention on the Universal Message of the Simhastha, at Ninaura near here today.
 
Mr. Modi received Mr. Sirisena at Indore airport and the two then travelled together to the venue of the convention.
 
Addressing the gathering, which has also been described as a “Vichar Kumbh” on the sidelines of the Kumbh Mela, the Prime Minister described the convention as the birth of a new effort. He said this was a modern edition of what might have happened in ancient times, when thought-leaders of society would gather at the sites of Kumbh melas, to reflect and provide new vision to society. 
 
Speaking on Indian tradition and culture, he said that the mantra of a ‘Bhikshuk’ is “may good happen to the person who gives me alms, and even to the person who does not.” The Prime Minister gave several other illustrations of the values and humanism which define Indian culture. 
 
Referring to the launch of the Simhasth Declaration, which was dedicated to the world by Mr. Modi, Mr. Sirisena and Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, the Prime Minister said this would mark the start of a new discourse not only in India but around the world. 
 
The Prime Minister suggested that a ‘Vichar Kumbh’ should be held every year, to discuss issues such as afforestation and education of the girl child. 
 
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7 killed as thunderstorm brings down Simhastha Kumbh Mela pandals in Ujjain

At least seven people died and about 80 others suffered injuries when a thunderstorm struck the site of the ongoing Simhastha Kumbh Mela in Ujjain in Madhya Pradesh and brought down pandals set up for the pilgrims late Thursday afternoon.

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At least seven people died and about 80 others suffered injuries when a thunderstorm struck the site of the ongoing Simhastha Kumbh Mela in Ujjain in Madhya Pradesh and brought down pandals set up for the pilgrims late this afternoon.
 
Police officials told NetIndian the victims included four men and three women.
 
One of the men was a head constable of the Police Home Guard, while one of the women who died had been struck by lightning at Undasa while on her way to the Kumbh Mela, they said.
 
Most of the victims had succumbed to injuries they suffered when the makeshift pandals set up at the venue of the mega event came crashing in the heavy downpour and strong winds around 4.15 pm.
 
The injured had been rushed to the Ujjain Civil Hospital and other hospitals nearby.
 
The Simhastha Kumbh, being held from April 22 to May 21, is one of the largest religious congregations in the country, held every 12 years, and has attracted thousands of pilgrims from various parts of the country as well as a large number of foreign tourists.
 
Police said rescue teams, comprising personnel of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), the police, fire brigade and other emergency personnel, were going round the venue to look for peope who might need help.
 
They said efforts were being made to restore electricity to the Kumbh site and also re-erect the pandals and other structures that were brought down in the thunderstorm.
 
According to them, the police and the administration were able to minimise the impact of the thunderstorm by making use of public address systems and advise people not to panic.
 
"Anguished over the loss of lives at the Kumbh due to heavy rains. May Almighty give strength to the bereaved families to overcome the grief," Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on micro-blogging site Twitter.
 
" hope the injured recover quickly. I pray for the safety & well-being of all saints, pilgrims and tourists at the Kumbh," he added.
 
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Tata Power commissions 44 MW Lahori wind farm project in Madhya Pradesh

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Tata Power has announced that it has commissioned its 44 MW Lahori wind farm project, located in Shajapur district of Madhya Pradesh.
 
The company has developed this project through its fully owned subsiiary, Tata Power Renewable Energy Limited (TPREL).
 
With this addition, Tata Power's total installed capacity now stands at 9,183MW, besides serving two million customers through retail power distribution, a press release from the company said.
 
According to it, the Lahori wind farm project is expected to generate approximately 84 million unit (MU) per year. 
 
TPREL also has 500 MW of wind capacity under development and construction in the states of Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Karnataka. 
 
“The commissioning of 44 MW wind farm project fortifies Tata Power’s vision of generating significant percentage of its total generation capacity from clean energy sources. The project is a clean energy project, which will enhance and increase the company’s clean energy footprint across its value chain," Mr. Anil Sardana, MD and CEO, Tata Power, said.
 
"This is our fourth wind asset and we are in constant look out for similar opportunities in respect of wind and solar plants. This is yet another step towards the company's commitment to sustainability and will contribute towards making the nation stronger," he added.
 
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ICMR, MP govt., Sun Pharma launch public-private partnership for Malaria Free India

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Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), the Madhya Pradesh government and pharmaceuticals major Sun Pharma have launched a public-private partnership (PPP) project for Malaria Free India and other innovations in preventive health.
 
The agreement in this regard was announced here yesterday by ICMR Director General Soumya Swaminathan, Madhya Pradesh Principal Secretary Health Gauri Singh and Sun Pharma Managing Director Dilip Shanghvi in the presence of Union Health & Family Welfare Minister J P Nadda.
 
The public-private-partnership stakeholders will jointly undertake malaria control and elimination programme by setting up management and technical committees to provide oversight for disease surveillance and elimination. 
 
Under the agreement, ICMR, the MP governent and Sun Pharma will establish a malaria elimination demonstration project, titled Malaria Free India, to support the national framework for elimination of the disease in India. The demonstration project will be launched in one of the most malaria endemic districts of Madhya Pradesh and implemented in a phased manner, beginning with Mandla district.
 
The public-private-partnership stakeholders will execute the malaria elimination programme over a span of three to five years, covering over 200,000 households in more than 1,200 villages in Mandla district. 
 
Mr. Nadda said the intiative was a significant step in the health sector and felt it would prove to be a milestone in the government's strategy to eliminate malaria from the country. India is party to the commitment at the East Asia Summit for malaria elimination by 2030, he pointed out.
 
He also said malaria was a major public health problem, and that malaria endemic countries had shown significantly lower rates of economic growth.
 
He said the demonstration project would use proven case management and vector control strategies and was aimed at reducing the morbidity and mortality caused by malaria and preventing the re-introduction of malaria.
 
It will also strengthen the existing health systems, introduce mobile-based surveillance systems and treat all malaria cases as per National Vector Borne Disease Control Program (NVBDCP) guidelines, and mobilise communities. 
 
The lessons learned would be used for elimination of malaria from the country under the national program, he said. He stated that as the PPP initiative would dovetail into Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan goals, the benefits would be magnified. 
 
To demonstrate the feasibility of eliminating malaria and prevention of re-establishment of this disease, ICMR and Sun Pharma will use rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs) and anti-malarial drugs (ACTs), long-lasting insecticide treated bednets and indoor residual spray (IRS). 
 
In addition, as part of the PPP, ICMR and Sun Pharma will jointly conduct scientific research for development and testing of medical products (including drugs, biosimilars and vaccines) as well as undertake disease control and elimination programs. They will set up a Joint Working Group (JWG) to identify and collaborate in disease surveillance and elimination that are relevant to India. 
 
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Both will expand cooperation in the area of translational health sciences research with the objective of developing new and improved medicines for infectious and chronic diseases. They will jointly work to strengthen capacity and facilities required for conducting research and trials aimed at testing safety and efficacy of medical products. They will also work with other stakeholders in creating public awareness through accurate and research-based information exchange as part of their shared belief that knowledge of clinical safety and effectiveness of medicines is best determined through well-designed, scientifically robust, ethically conducted clinical trials. 
 
Acknowledge the need to establish systems for appropriate oversight of human clinical trials, the agreement covers capacity-building through basic and applied research collaborations, expert consultations, training, exchange of scientists, sharing of repository materials, strengthening of laboratory quality assurance systems and transfer of technology. 
 
"The lessons learned would be used for elimination of malaria from the country by the national program. I believe that this partnership has a potential to create sustainable impact by reducing malaria morbidity and improving people's health. This will enable us to alleviate poverty within the target geographies through cost effective interventions and improvement of overall development and quality of life," Mr. Nadda added.
 
Dr. Swaminathan said Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Maharashtra and North-Eastern states were responsibile for more than 60 ercent of malaria cases in the country. He said 91 districts, with 5% of the country's population and 31% of its tribal population, were high burden districts, contributing nearly half of India's malaria cases and deaths.
 
“Malaria is a major public health problem. It is known to impede development, saving and investment as well as worker productivity in the form of absenteeism. All this has an adverse impact on per-capita gross domestic product. Moreover, there is a strong correlation between malaria and poverty. Malaria endemic countries have shown significantly lower rates of economic growth. Through our Malaria Free India initiative we aim to achieve zero malaria incidences in more than 1,200 villages of Mandla district of Madhya Pradesh by FY21. The experience gained from Mandla project will guide the development of broader plans for malaria elimination in Madhya Pradesh as well as other high malaria endemic States in India," Mr. Shanghvi said.
 
For operationalizing the Malaria Free India goals, Sun Pharma will establish a not-for-profit foundation. This Foundation will operate as an independent entity by engaging national and international experts as knowledge partners for the project while remaining accountable to the Malaria Free India public-private-partnership stakeholders. 
 
"The Malaria Free India demonstration project is in line with Sun Pharma's CSR efforts for holistic development of underserved communities in a sustainable and impactful manner. This unique Malaria Free India public-private-partnership gives Sun Pharma an opportunity to play a significant role in eliminating malaria. A team of over 200 members will be part of the implementation of this demonstration project," a press release from the company added.
 
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National Cultural Festival at Simhastha Kumbh in Ujjain from April 22

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A National Cultural Festival (NCF) has been organized by the Ministry of Culture at Ujjain, Madhya Pradesh as part of “Simhastha Kumbh” starting from April 22.
 
An official press release said here today that all seven Cultural Zones of the country along with Lalit Kala Akademi, Sangeet Natak Akademi, National School of Drama,  Centre for Cultural Resources and Training (CCRT), and Sahitya Akademi will be participating in the festival organized in collaboration with the Madhya Pradesh Government. 
 
Around 3,000 artistes from all over India have been invited to perform at the festival that will see a huge gathering. Daily performances will take place on four platforms – Garh Kalika Manch, Agar Manch, Bhookhi Mata and Sadaval Manch. 
 
Noted Hindustani vocalist Pandit Jasraj will perform on the inaugural day. Vedic chants and devotional songs every morning would start the day. More than 150 Rangoli artists will be making their presentations every day. Over 300 painters will be displaying their creativity documenting the various aspects of Simhastha Kumbh. 
 
All creations will be exhibited in New Delhi and a coffee table book will be published after conclusion of the Kumbh Festival. 
 
Divine classical, semi-classical and light music and folk and dances, kavi sammelan, plays, rangoli, art workshops, book exhibitions will be some of the major attractions of the festival. Artistes will also make presentations to convey a message on keeping rivers pure and clean.
 
South Central Zone Cultural Centre, Nagpur is the nodal agency for the festival. 
 
The Simhastha Kumbh is being held from April 22 to May 21 during which Ujjain will host hundreds of thousands of pilgrims arriving from various parts of the country. This festival will be a major attraction for foreign tourists as well, the release added.
 
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Inox Wind bags 100 MW orders in Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat

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Wind energy solutions provider Inox Wind Limited today said it had bagged two orders for a cumulative capacity of 100 MW from a leading renewable energy independent power producer (IPP).
 
The turnkey orders comprise a 50 MW project to be set up in Gujarat and a 50 MW project to be set up in Madhya Pradesh, a press release from the company said.
 
The projects once commissioned will provide power to about 50,000 households, curtail about 0.15 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions annually and further consolidate Inox Wind’s leading position in the two states, it said.
 
The release said that, as part of the turnkey projects, Inox Wind would provide end-to-end solutions from development and construction to commissioning and providing long-term operations and maintenance services.  
 
The orders involve supply and installation of 25 units of Inox Wind’s 100 meter rotor dia wind turbine generator (WTG) for the Gujarat project and 25 units of the company’s 113 meter rotor dia WTG for the Madhya Pradesh project.  The 113 m rotor dia WTG is the newest variant of the company’s 2 MW platform, it said.
 
“These orders have further boosted Inox’s strong order book with major IPPs in India. Orders from a leading renewable energy IPP prove the competitiveness of wind power in the states of Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh and ensure that Inox Wind continues to play a key role in further developing the wind energy industry in the two states,” said Mr. Kailash Tarachandani, Chief Executive Officer of Inox Wind Limited.
 
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Mukherjee to visit Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh on April 15-16

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President Pranab Mukherjee will pay an official visit to Wellington in Tamil Nadu and Bhopal in Madhya Pradesh on April 15-16.
 
Tomorrow, Mr. Mukherjee will attend the convocation of Defence Services Staff College at Wellington, an official press release said.
 
On April 16, Mr. Mukherjee will inaugurate the Fourth Retreat of the Judges of the Supreme Court at the National Judicial Academy, Bhopal before returning to New Delhi, it added.
 
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Govt. initiates steps to increase bamboo production to meet burgeoning demand

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Pointing to the tremendous demand for bamboo both at home and abroad, Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh has stated that all necessary action was being taken to fill the gaps between supply and demand in this sector.
 
Speaking at the three-day World Bamboo Conference here yesterday, Mr Singh said while there had been a trade of $ 20 billion in th world bamboo market by the end of 2015, the domestic markets saw transactions worth Rs. 26,000 crore.
 
He said the government was looking at the possibilities of industrial production utilising bamboo. Generating electricity through the direct utilization of bio fuel and bio mass gasification to produce charcoal or compressed bamboo biomass pellets was also under consideration. 
 
Rayon/cellulose fibre plants have been set up for the production and export of quality bamboo fabrics like bath robes, baby wear, T- shirts, jackets and suits, he said.
 
Mr. Singh said bamboo played an important role in terms of food stuff nutrients and livelihood related ecological security. The sector could contribute in employment creation, provide livelihood means to weaker sections in rural areas and thus abolish poverty. 
 
“As much as 13% of our forest area comprises bamboo. More than 137 species of bamboo are grown in the country which are used for 1500 diversified utilities,” he added.
 
However, following a decline in bamboo and bamboo forest areas, there is a tremendous gap between demand and supply. According to the estimates by NITI Aayog, the domestic production of bamboo is sufficient for meeting only half of the demand in the country, he said.
 
"Therefore there is an immediate requirement to increase production of quality bamboo to meet the increasing demand for bamboo. Keeping in view the possibility of economic utilization of bamboo, the union government has initiated National Bamboo Mission (NBM) – A centrally sponsored scheme under Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare in 2006," he said.
 
"During this period, the mission has with its limited resources, implemented this scheme in 28 states with the assistance of State Bamboo Missions. Since the initiation of the mission, bamboo has been planted on 349864 hectares. As many as 1436 nurseries have been established to supply quality bamboo saplings," he added.
 
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World Bank to provide IDA assistance of $300m for MP Higher Education Quality Improvement Project

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India and the World Bank signed a financing agreement for IDA credit of $ 300 million (equivalent) for the "Madhya Pradesh Higher Education Quality Improvement Project" here yesterday.
 
The financing agreement was signed by Mr. Raj Kumar (Joint Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs) on behalf of Government of India and Mr. Onno Ruhl, Country Director, World Bank (India) on behalf of the World Bank. A project agreement was also signed by Mr. K K Singh, Principal Secretary, Department of Higher Education, Government of Madhya Pradesh and Mr. Ruhl.
 
An official press release said the objective of the project was to improve student outcomes, especially of disadvantaged groups, in selected Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) and to increase the effectiveness of the Higher Education System in Madhya Pradesh. 
 
The project has three components that include Grants Support to Higher Education Institutions, State Level Initiatives and Improving System Management. 
 
The release said the project had been designed as a result based financing programme, implying that funds will be released based on the achievement of specific results or disbursement linked indicators (DLls). The DLls have been designed to ensure outcomes such as increase in enrolment of full time students, increase in transition rate, achievement of NAAC accreditation criteria by participating HEls, better transparency in the affairs of participating institutions and strengthening of governance structure 
 
The closing date of Madhya Pradesh Higher Education Quality Improvement Project is 31st August, 2021. 
 
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Modi unveils operational guidelines for crop insurance scheme

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi unveiled the operational guidelines for the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana at a massive farmers' rally in Sehore in Madhya Pradesh today and said it would provide a solution for many of the problems faced by agriculturists in times of difficulty.
 
Explaining the benefits of this comprehensive crop insurance scheme, he said care had been taken to eliminate the shortcomings of previous crop insurance schemes, and create trust among farmers with regard to crop insurance. 
 
He said technology would be used extensively with this scheme to ensure early settlement of claims, and exhorted farmers to take benefit of it.
 
The Prime Minister outlined several other initiatives that have been taken by the Union Government for the welfare of farmers. He mentioned the steps taken to clear the pending dues of the sugarcane farmers, which had mounted to many thousands of crore rupees. 
 
Speaking about the Digital India movement, Mr. Modi said welfare of the farmers was at its core. He announced the launch of the digital platform - National Agriculture Market – from April 14, the birth anniversary of Babasaheb Ambedkar, the architect of the Indian constitution.This would enable farmers to get a better price for their produce. 
 
The Prime Minister also mentioned other major initiatives taken in the agriculture sector, such as the soil health card scheme, the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana, organic farming, and ensuring adequate availability of urea. 
 
Mr. Modi congratulated the farmers of Madhya Pradesh, and state  Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan for the state's "excellent performance" in the agriculture sector. 
 
He also gave away soil health cards, and settlement certificates for insurance claims to select beneficiaries. 
 
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Cabinet okays return of 478 hectares of land to Madhya Pradesh govt.

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The Union Cabinet today gave its approval for the return of  approximately 478.307 hectares of land to the State Government of Madhya Pradesh.
 
The land comprises approximately 461.607 hectares private acquired land and 16.70 hectares Government land, valued at approximately Rs. 740 crore of Auto Testing Track in Pithampur, Indore (NATRIX) in Madhya Pradesh of NATRIP Project. 
 
The land returned would be utilized by the State Government for allotment to the auto and related ancillary industries which will have a synergistic effect with the existing NATRAX project, an official press release added.
 
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15 dead, 37 injured in bus mishap in Hoshangabad district of MP

 
15 people killed in bus accident in Hoshangabad
 
At least 15 people died and 37 others suffered injuries when a private bus they were travelling in crashed off a bridge in Hoshangabad district of Madhya Pradesh this morning, official sources said.
 
The deceased included seven men, seven women and a ten-year-old boy, Additional District Superintendent of Police Shashank Garg told NetIndian over the telephone.
 
He said the mishap occurred when the driver of the bus apparently lost control over the vehicle while negotiating a sharp turn on the road near Bamhouri village, about 45 km from the district headquarters.
 
District Collector Sanket Bhondve, Mr. Garg and other senior administration and police officials rushed to the spot immediately. 
Local people also pitched in, and the rescue teams extricated the injured and rushed them to nearby hospitals.
 
There were about 55 passengers in the bus, most of whom were travelling from Indore to Parasia to attend a wedding.
 
Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan announced a relief of Rs 1.5 lakh for the next-of-kin of those killed in the mishap, Rs. 50,000 for those who suffered serious injuries and Rs. 25,000 for those who received minor injuries.
 
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ADB to provide $273m loan to improve rural roads in five states

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The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Government of India signed here today a $273 million loan agreement to continue improving rural roads in the states of Assam, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha and West Bengal. 
 
An official press release said the loan represented the third and last tranche of the $800 million financing facility under the Rural Connectivity Investment Program. 
 
The loan will help in constructing over 6,000 kilometers of all-weather rural roads in the five states, benefiting over 4200 rural habitations, it said.
 
Mr. S. Selvakumar, Joint Secretary (Bilateral Cooperation), Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance signed the Loan Agreement on behalf of the Government of India while Ms Teresa Kho, Country Director signed the loan agreement for ADB. 
 
Mr. Selvakumar said that the program had supported the Government’s objectives under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) by providing all-weather road connectivity in selected rural areas in the five states. He said that the enhanced connectivity would improve access of rural communities to markets, district headquarters, health and education facilities, and other centers of economic activity. 
 
Ms Kho said that it was expected that Project 3 would result in benefits similar to the previous two projects including improving and sustaining the connectivity of selected rural communities in the five states. She said that this loan would be used to make further investments as well as supporting improved road design, road safety and asset management measures, and training, with women actively involved in all aspects. 
 
The Ministry of Rural Development (MORD) is the executing agency of the project at the central level, while the Governments of Assam, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, and West Bengal have been entrusted with overall implementation at the respective state level. 
 
The third tranche is expected to be completed by December, 2017. The implementing agencies at the state level will be the respective State Rural Roads Development Agencies, the release added.
 
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Inox Wind bags 50 MW repeat order from Tata Power Renewable Energy Limited

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Wind energy solutions provider Inox Wind Limited today said it had  bagged an order for a 50 MW wind power project at Lahori in Madhya Pradesh from Tata Power Renewable Energy Limited (TPREL).  
 
The order is TPREL’s third project with Inox Wind after two previous orders of 172 MW, a press release from Inox said.
 
TPREL is a 100% subsidiary of Tata Power and has about 300 MW of commissioned renewable assets. Tata Power, including TPREL’s capacities, has a commissioned capacity of 600+ MW of wind and solar assets. 
 
As part of the turnkey order, Inox Wind will provide TPREL with end to end solutions from development and construction to commissioning and providing long term operations and maintenance services, the release said.
 
The order involves supply and installation of 25 units of Inox Wind’s 2MW DFIG 100 rotor dia Wind Turbine Generator, which has one of the highest swept areas in its class.  These have recently been improved and recertified by TUV SUD to have a higher annual energy production of 21% compared to Inox’s WT 93 product.  The turbines are designed to harness incremental energy at lower cost and are ideally suited for low wind areas, it said.
 
With one of the largest project site inventories across wind rich states in India, Inox Wind has a ready pipeline of projects which the company is developing as part of its turnkey solutions for clients.  The company offers its clients an array of services including wind resource assessment, acquiring land, developing the entire site infrastructure, building the power evacuation system, supplying the WTGs, erection and commissioning services, long term operations and maintenance services as well as post-commissioning support.    
 
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"The third order from TPREL has reaffirmed Inox Wind’s position as the preferred wind energy solutions provider to major IPPs in India.  Repeat orders from a well established renewables player like TPREL reinforce trust in Inox’s technology, execution capabilities and reliability of services.  TPREL is one of our most valued customers and we are very happy to partner with TPREL in growing their wind energy portfolio in India," said Mr. Kailash Tarachandani, Chief Executive Officer of Inox Wind Limited.
 
“The 50 MW Lahori project is TPREL’s third project with Inox Wind and its first in Madhya Pradesh. We are confident that Inox will again deliver the project safely, timely and of top notch quality. We look forward to building a long and fruitful relationship with Inox on the strong foundation of the previous successful projects in Gujarat and Rajasthan.” Rahul Shah, Chief Executive Officer of TPREL said.
 
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Cabinet nod for creation of posts of Directors for four new NIDs

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The Union Cabinet today approved the creation of four posts of Directors for four new National Institutes of Design (NIDs) at Kurukshetra (Haryana), Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh), Jorhat (Assam) and Vijayawada (Andhra Pradesh). 
 
The Cabinet had already approved financial implications including salaries, for setting up of these new NIDs in its meeting held in February, 2014. 
 
The National Design Policy was approved by the Cabinet in February, 2007. One of the components of the Action Plan for implementation of the policy is setting up of four more NIDs on the pattern of NID, Ahmedabad. This would help in spreading quality education in design to all regions of India, an official press release said.
 
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87 dead, over 100 injured in explosion in building in Jhabhua district of MP

At least 87 persons died and more than 100 others suffered injuries when gelatine sticks stored in a building, adjacent to a restaurant, caught fire and exploded at Petlawad town in Jhabua district of Madhya Pradesh on Saturday, official sources said.

 
87 dead, over 100 injured in explosion in building in Jhabhua district of MP
 
At least 87 persons died and more than 100 others suffered injuries when gelatine sticks stored in a building, adjacent to a restaurant, caught fire and exploded at Petlawad town in Jhabua district of Madhya Pradesh today, official sources said.
 
The gelatine sticks were stored along with some liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) cylinders in a house owned by a person who was engaged in the fertilisers and seeds business and also had a license to stock explosives, they said.
 
The gelatine sticks were meant to be used for digging of wells and such purposes, the sources said.
 
The blast claimed the lives of several people in the restaurant as well as those waiting at a nearby bus-stand and passers-by, police officials told NetIndian from the scene of the tragedy.
 
They said those killed in the explosion included eight women and thre children. 
 
The number of casualties is likely to go up when the debris of the building, which was razed to the ground, is cleared, the sources said.
 
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The injured were rushed to hospitals in Jhabhua and Ratlam as well as Dahod in adjacent Gujarat.
 
State Tribal Minister Antar Singh Arya and senior district and police stations have rushed to the scene of the blast, about 65 km from the district headquarters.
 
Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said he had ordered a high-level inquiry into the incident. He also announced an ex-gratia payment of Rs 2 lakh to the next-of-kin of those killed in the incident and Rs 50,000 for those injured.
 
Teams from the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) have been despatched to the spot to help in the rescue efforts.
 
The blast occurred at around 9 am and damaged several other nearby buildings, too, the sources said.
 
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45 dead, several more injured in explosion in building in Jhabhua district of MP

At least 45 people died and several others suffered injuries when gelatine sticks stored in a building, adjacent to a restaurant, caught fire and exploded at Petlawad town in Jhabua district of Madhya Pradesh on Saturday, official sources said.

 
45 dead in explosion in building in Jhabhua district of MP
 
At least 45 people died and several others suffered injuries when gelatine sticks stored in a building, adjacent to a restaurant, caught fire and exploded at Petlawad town in Jhabua district of Madhya Pradesh today, official sources said.
 
The gelatine sticks were stored along with some liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) cylinders in a house owned by a person who was engaged in the fertilisers and pesticides business and had a license to stock explosives, they said.
 
The blast claimed the lives of several people in the restaurant as well as those waiting at a nearby bus-stand and passers-by, police officials.
 
The number of casualties is likely to go up when the debris of the building is cleared, the sources said.
 
The injured were rushed to hospitals in Jhabhua and Ratlam as well as Dahod in adjacent Gujarat.
 
State Tribal Minister Antar Singh Arya and senior district and police stations have rushed to the scene of the blast, about 65 km from the district headquarters.
 
Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said he had ordered a high-level inquiry into the incident. He also announced an ex-gratia payment of Rs 2 lakh to the next-of-kin of those killed in the incident and Rs 50,000 for those injured.
 
Teams from the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) have been despatched to the spot to help in the rescue efforts.
 
The blast occurred at around 9 am and damaged several other nearby buildings, too, the sources said.
 
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BHEL commissions 500 MW unit at Vindhyachal Super Thermal Power Station

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The public sector Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL) today said it had added one more coal-based power plant to the grid by successfully commissioning the 500 MW Unit-13 of Vindhyachal Super Thermal Power Station (STPS), Stage-V of NTPC. 
 
The project is located at Vindhyanagar in Singrauli district of Madhya Pradesh.
 
BHEL had earlier commissioned six units of 500 MW rating each at Vindhyachal power station. With the commissioning of this unit, BHEL has now commissioned seven sets of 500 MW aggregating to 3,500 MW, the highest by it in a power project, a press release from the company said.
 
BHEL’s scope of work in the contract envisaged design, engineering, manufacture, supply and erection and commissioning of steam generator and steam turbine generator along with associated auxiliaries and state-of-the-art controls and instrumentation.
 
The equipment for the project was manufactured at BHEL’s Trichy, Ranipet, Haridwar, Hyderabad, Bangalore and Bhopal plants, while the company’s Power Sector - Western Region undertook erection and commissioning of the equipment.
 
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Modi announces additional ex-gratia relief for victims of train derailments in MP

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi today announced an ex-gratia relief of Rs. 2 lakh each from the Prime Minister’s Relief Fund for the next-of-kin of those who lost their lives in the two train derailments in Madhya Pradesh late last night.
 
This is in addition to the relief assistance already announced by the Railways, an official press release said.
 
An ex-gratia relief of Rs. 50,000 has also been sanctioned from the Prime Minister’s Relief Fund for those who were seriously injured in the derailments, it added.
 
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