Friday, August 30, 2013

தேசிய நெடுஞ்சாலை ஆணைய திட்டங்களுக்கு மாநில அரசு முட்டுக்கட்டை


தி.மு.., ஆட்சியில் துவக்கப்பட்டது என்ற காரணத்தால், தமிழகத்தில் நடந்து வரும் தேசிய நெடுஞ்சாலை ஆணையம் மேற்கொண்டு வரும் பல்வேறு திட்டங்களுக்கும், மாநில அரசு முட்டுக்கட்டை போட்டு வருகிறது என்ற குற்றச்சாட்டு எழுந்துள்ளது. கோவை - மேட்டுப்பாளையம் நான்கு வழிச்சாலை திட்டம் கைவிடப்பட்டுள்ள நிலையில், மற்ற திட்டங்களின் நிலை கேள்விக்குறியாகியுள்ளது.

சென்னைத் துறைமுகம் - மதுரவாயல் மேம்பால சாலைத் திட்டத்தை, 1,815 கோடி ரூபாயில், தேசிய நெடுஞ்சாலை ஆணையம், 2010, செப்டம்பரில் துவக்கியது. 20 சதவீத பணி மட்டுமே நடந்த நிலையில், கூவத்தில் நீரோட்டத்தைப் பாதிக்கும் வகையில், பணி நடப்பதாக தமிழக அரசு தடை விதித்தது. பிரதமரின் ஆலோசகர் உள்ளிட்டோர், மாநில அரசுடன் பலகட்ட பேச்சு நடத்தியும் பயனில்லை. 485 நாட்களைக் கடந்தும் பணிகள் முடங்கியுள்ளன. இதைத் தொடர்ந்து, 630 கோடி ரூபாய் மதிப்பிலான, கோவை - மேட்டுப்பாளையம் நான்கு வழிச்சாலைத் திட்டத்தில், மாநில அரசு சிக்கல் செய்தது. சட்ட ரீதியாக வாய்ப்பில்லாத இடத்தில் சுங்கச்சாவடியை அமைக்க வேண்டும் என, நெருக்கடி கொடுத்தது. ஒரு கட்டத்தில், திட்டத்திற்கான முன் அனுமதியை மாநில அரசு ரத்து செய்ததால், அதிருப்தியடைந்த தேசிய நெடுஞ்சாலை ஆணையம், சில தினங்களுக்கு முன், திட்டத்தைக் கைவிடுவதாக அறிவித்தது.
இதுகுறித்து, திட்ட இயக்குனர் கணேஷ்குமார் கூறுகையில், ""மாநில அரசு, திட்டத்தை செயல்படுத்த விடாத வகையில் பல்வேறு நெருக்கடிகளைக் கொடுத்தது. திட்ட வரைவுப்படி, சுங்கச்சாவடி அமைய வேண்டும். இதை, வேறு இடத்திற்கு மாற்ற வலியுறுத்தியது,'' என்றார். மேலும், ""நகராட்சி எல்லையில் இருந்து, 10 கி.மீ., தூரத்திற்குள் சட்ட ரீதியாக சுங்கச்சாவடி அமைக்க முடியாது என, தெரிவித்ததும், மாநில அரசு அளித்த 
முன் அனுமதியை ரத்து செய்தது. எனவே, வேறு வழியின்றி திட்டம் கைவிடும் நிலை ஏற்பட்டது,'' என்றார்.

மாநில அரசு பணி என்ன?
* தேசிய நெடுஞ்சாலை ஆணையம் மேற்கொள்ளும் பணிகளுக்கு, மாநில அரசு ஒத்துழைப்பு உடன்படிக்கையில் கையெழுத்திட வேண்டும்.

* திட்டத்திற்கு தேவையான நிலங்களை ஆர்ஜிதம் செய்து, ஒப்படைக்க வேண்டும்.

* திட்டப்பணிக்கு தேவையான சவுடு மண், ஜல்லி போன்றவற்றை பெற, மாவட்ட நிர்வாகம் மூலம் அனுமதி அளிக்க வேண்டும்
ஆனால், மாநில அரசு, தமிழகத்தில் நடக்கும் எந்த திட்டத்திற்கும், ஒத்துழைப்பு உடன்படிக்கையில் கையெழுத்திடாமலும், நில ஆர்ஜிதம், மண், ஜல்லி எடுக்க அனுமதி தராமலும் இருந்து வருவதால், துவக்கப்பட்ட பணிகளும் செயல்படுத்த முடியாமல் முடங்கும் சூழல் ஏற்பட்டுள்ளது.
ஆணையத்தின் பொது மேலாளர் ரெட்டி கூறுகையில், ""மாநில அரசு வேண்டுமென்றே, இரண்டு ஆண்டுகளாக, தேசிய நெடுஞ்சாலை ஆணையத் திட்டங்களுக்கு ஒத்துழைக்கவில்லை; மாநிலத்தின் வளர்ச்சியைப் பற்றி கவலைப்படவில்லை,'' என்றார்.
காரணம் என்ன? 
தமிழகத்தில் நடந்து வரும், 13 திட்டங்களும் (பட்டியல் தனியாக), கடந்த தி.மு.க., ஆட்சிக் காலத்தின் போது துவக்கப்பட்டவை தான். மத்திய கப்பல், தரைவழி போக்குவரத்து அமைச்சராக இருந்த டி.ஆர்.பாலு ஆர்வம் காட்டினார். ஆட்சி மாற்றத்திற்கு முன் அவசரம் அவசரமாக ஒப்பந்தம் கோரி, பூஜை போடும் பணிகளும் முடிந்தன. தி.மு.., காலத்தில் துவக்கியது என்ற காரணத்திற்காக, மாநில அரசு 
தொடர்ந்து முட்டுக்கட்டை போட்டு வருவதாகக் கூறப்படுகிறது. "இதைத் தவிர வேறு எந்த காரணமும் இருப்பதாக தெரியவில்லை' என்று, பெயர் வெளியிட விரும்பாத, தேசிய நெடுஞ்சாலை ஆணைய அதிகாரி வெளிப்படையாக பேசினார்.
திட்டங்களின் கதி என்ன? 
தமிழகத்தில், 9,278 கோடி ரூபாயில், 1,136 கி.மீ., தூரத்திற்கு, 13 திட்டங்களை தேசிய ஆணையம் செயல்படுத்தி வருகிறது. மாநில அரசின் ஒத்துழைப்பின்மையால் மந்த கதியில் பணிகள் நடந்து வருகின்றன. மேலும், 13 திட்டங்கள் (பட்டியல் தனியாக) திட்ட வரைவு தயாரித்தல், ஒப்பந்தம் கோரும் நிலையிலும் உள்ளன. "மாநில அரசு தொடர்ந்து முட்டுக்கட்டை போடுவதால், தமிழகத்தில் பணிகளை ஏன் எடுத்தோம் என, ஒப்பந்ததாரர்கள் புலம்புகின்றனர். திட்டங்களைச் செயல்படுத்த நாங்கள் நினைத்தாலும், ஒப்பந்ததாரர்கள் முன் வருவரா என்ற சந்தேகம் உள்ளது' என, ஆணைய உயர் அதிகாரி ஒருவர் தெரிவித்தார்.
தமிழ்நாடு தரைவழி போக்குவரத்து கூட்டமைப்பு தலைவர் சுகுமார் கூறுகையில், ""மாநில அரசு, மாநில வளர்ச்சியைப் பார்க்க வேண்டுமே தவிர, எந்த ஆட்சியில், யாரால் துவங்கப்பட்டது என, பார்ப்பது சரியல்ல. தேசிய நெடுஞ்சாலை ஆணையத் திட்டங்களால் மாநிலம் வளர்ச்சி பெறும்; நெரிசல் தீரும். திட்டங்களுக்கு ஒத்துழைப்பதோடு, எங்கள் காலத்தில் கொண்டு வந்தோம் என, மேலும் பல திட்டங்களை, மாநில அரசு கொண்டு வரலாம்,'' என்றார்.
மாநிலத்தின் வளர்ச்சிக்கு, சாலை மேம்பாட்டுத் திட்டங்கள் அவசியம். இது போன்ற திட்டங்கள் வருவதால் தான், வெளிநாட்டு தொழில் நிறுவனங்களும் சென்னையில் தொழில் துவங்க முன் வந்துள்ளன. சாலை மேம்பாட்டுத் திட்டங்கள் முடங்குவது, மாநில வளர்ச்சியைப் பாதிக்கும் என்பதால், தமிழக அரசு, தேசிய நெடுஞ்சாலை ஆணையத் திட்டங்களுக்கு சரியான ஒத்துழைப்பு வழங்க வேண்டும் என்பதே தமிழக மக்களின் விருப்பம்.
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நமது நிருபர் -


Saturday, August 24, 2013

Learn your job, be a good shipmate & stay happy – Chief Surveyor tells cadets

source:http://www.sagarsandesh.com/news/learn-your-job-be-a-good-shipmate-stay-happy-chief-surveyor-tells-cadets/

Underlying the importance of good training for sea-going professionals in their respective training institutes, Mr. Amitava Banerjee, Chief Surveyor with the GoI, Directorate General of Shipping, has urged the cadets to learn their job onboard a ship and be a good shipmate.

Addressing a gathering of students and guests during the passing out ceremony of first batch of Diploma Mechanical Engineers (DME) and third batch of Graduate Mechanical Engineers (GME) at Hindustan Institute of Maritime Training (HIMT), he said: “You (passing out cadets) have been given loads of information, long hours of training, so many experiences and faculty members teaching you day in and day out on what is to be required onboard a ship.
Exhorting the cadets to understand the intricacies before going onboard a ship for job, Mr. Banerjee stated: “You (cadets) are required to know all the systems that would be onboard. Unless you  are able to impress your seniors, which is not possible unless you know your job onboard, you will not be of any help to the people onboard the ship, and unless you are of some help onboard ship, you will not be in a position to remain happy.”

“Therefore, I exhort you that please see to it that you learn your job (onboard a ship). Be a good shipmate and stay happy,” Mr. Banerjee advised the passing out cadets.
Touching upon the rights of seafarers onboard, he added: “You have certain basic rights onboard and those are to be maintained. Once those rights are maintained, there is no problem.”
Earlier, Mr. Banerjee formally inaugurated the Ship-in-Campus – T S Madhurika and congratulated the efforts of HIMT for inculcating quality maritime education and training to its students.
In his welcome address, Mr Sanjeev S.Vakil, Managing Director, HIMT, lauded the efforts of Mr. Banerjee in focusing on quality (maritime) education and training that ultimately help the cadets to suit into their jobs onboard a ship.
Mr. Vakil pointed out: “The most important thing, which is going to bring revolution in training, is the Comprehensive Inspection Programme (CIP), framed in the interest of seafarers, Maritime Training Institutes (MTIs) and shipping companies. It is three-in-one approach comprising scheduled inspection by Academic Council, Quality Management System (QMS) audit by a certifying body and rating assessment by credit and debit rating agencies and I think the order (by DG Shipping) is going to ease out many things.”
Besides others, Mr. V. Ganapathi Rao, Vice-President (Technical), Goodearth Maritime Pvt Ltd., attended the ceremony.

TCX begins weekly service from KICT (Kattupalli Port) on Sept. 19

Source: http://www.sagarsandesh.com/news/tcx-begins-weekly-service-from-kict-on-sept-19/

Kattupalli International Container Terminal (KICT), a new facility managed by L & T (next to Ennore Port, Tamil Nadu) and operated by International Container Terminal Services Inc. (ICTSI), has announced that THAILAND CHENNAI EXPRESS SERVICE (“TCX –), a consortium of NYK & X-PRESS Feeders, would begin regular schedule from KICT from Sept. 19.

According to vessel schedule information available online from NYK Line, TCX vessel Iwaki (voyage no: 161) would call at KICT on Sept 19 evening and expected to leave the terminal in the wee hours of Sept. 20.

It may be worth recalling at this juncture that the KICT handled its maiden import-boxes laden vessel X-PRESS INDUS (TCX service) on April 18.

Sensing a new business opportunity after the first TCX service call, the management of the terminal as well as the TCX consortium held several rounds of negotiations for regular services from Kattupalli.

Finally, a few days ago, the consortium gave its nod for a regular weekly service from Kattupalli to Singapore, Port Klang and Laem Chabang.

With a view to meeting the demand of the EXIM fraternity, KICT also made operational its Container Freight Station (CFS) located inside the port premises.

With a ground slot for 360 TEUs and a full-fledged modern warehouse in about 45,000 sqft, KICT also equipped itself to cater to the requirement of exporters and importers.

The port of rotation for TCX service would be Laem Chabang – Singapore – Port Klang – Kattupalli – Chennai – Port Klang-Singapore-Laem Chabang.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Chennai Port assures good deal for fertilizer importers

Source:http://www.sagarsandesh.com/news/chennai-port-assures-good-deal-for-fertilizer-importers/

As part of its series of trade facilitation meetings with (port) users, Chennai Port on Aug. 19 organized an interactive session with fertilizer importers in its premises.
More than a dozen prominent players in the sector, including Madras Fertilizers Limited, Coromandel International Ltd, Indian Potash Limited, Rashtriya Chemicals and Fertilizers Ltd, KRIBCHO and Southern Petrochemical Industries Corporation Ltd-SPIC (from importers side) and Express Clearing Agency, Western Agencies and PSTS Logistics Ltd (from stevedores’ side) had sent their representatives for the interactive session.
Initiating a free-wheeling chat with the prominent players of the segment in the region, Mr. N. Vaiyapuri, Traffic Manager, Chennai Port Trust, made a brief presentation on the facilities available for importers of fertilizers in the port.
In his brief presentation on the current scenario, he spoke about the availability of transit sheds and modern warehouses for fertilizers inside the port premises.
While presenting the prevailing situation of continuing downward trend in handling of fertilizer imports in Chennai Port over the past five years with apt statistics, Mr. Vaiyapuri sought the trade’s help to improve the situation.
Addressing the elite guests, Mr. Atulya Misra, Chairman, Chennai Port Trust, sought a new perspective from the trade on how to turnaround the situation, where it would be win-win for both the port management as well as to the importers.
He also asked the trade to spell out their problems and other issues while approaching the Chennai Port management for import of fertilizer products.
During the interaction, the representatives of the trade outlined a few impediments like restricted movement of fertilizer products from port premises via road transport, non-availability of more rakes from Railways for moving out cargo, crane utilization and slow discharge rates – that prevent them from using the Chennai Port for their fertilizer imports.
Responding to them after giving a patient hearing to their problem and possible expectations from the port, Mr. Atulya Misra assured them of looking into their concerns in a systematic manner.
He also assured the trade that he would take up the movement restriction of fertilizer products in lorries as bulk (than bags) with the local authorities, including the traffic police department soon.
It may be noted here that the local authorities in Chennai had banned the movement of sulphur, one of the fertilizer products regularly imported via Chennai Port, in bulk (rather than packed in bags) in heavy vehicles due to a spillage event some five years ago.
According to the traders, they find it very difficult economically to import the product in bulk up to Chennai Port, then repack them into bags just for the prevailing movement restriction and unpack them to store it in bulk in their respective godowns.
Reacting to the demand of more rakes from Railways for moving such cargo, as 70 % of fertilizer products have to be mandatorily moved via rail-network only, the Chairman assured the trade that he would take up the matter with the Railway authorities very soon.
Mr. Misra also informed the EXIM players that the management has already envisaged plans for improving productivity and moving fast on enhancing handling capacity inside the port by going in for Public-Private-Partnership (PPP) mode.
Besides other senior port officials, Mr. R. Ananth, Assistant Commissioner, Chennai Customs, attended the meet and offered clarifications on Customs-related issues.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Chennai Port stresses in HC importance of elevated road

-Issue is likely to reach its crescendo on Aug. 19, when the State Government is expected to file its affidavit as directed by the Madras High Court.

The 19-km Chennai Port-Maduravoyal Elevated Road is of great significance in view of the development of a container terminal with a capacity of four million TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units) of containers per annum, the port authority has said in an affidavit before Madras High Court.
Filing a counter on Aug. 14 to a writ petition filed by the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) seeking the quashing of the order of the Chief Engineer, PWD, Water Resource Organisation, Chennai Region (Government of Tamil Nadu), of Jan. 28, Mr. Sunilkumar Madabhavi, Chief Engineer, ChPT, submitted before the court that of the total traffic handled by Chennai Port for the last five years, 70 to 80 per cent cargo movement was by road, of which 60 to 70 per cent road-bound cargo was towards the south of the port (towards Maduravoyal due to its proximity to national highways).
“Due to the congestion on city roads and due to commencement of Chennai Metro rail construction work, the southern gate of the port was open only for a limited period during night hours for cargo traffic. Hence, completion of this project is vital for cargo movement to and from Chennai Port and the proposed dry port at Mappedu, without hindering city road traffic,” he submitted.
The project is not only beneficial for the development of Chennai Port but would also help local traffic to use the corridor continuously as there are entry and exit ramps in the corridor for local traffic to reach the Madras High Court, Rajiv Gandhi Government Hospital and Central and Egmore railway stations and other major hospitals located en route the elevated road without passing through congested arterial roads inside the city, he said in the affidavit.
It all started in March this year, when the Madras High Court ordered notice to the State Government authorities and the Chennai Port Trust (ChPT) following a plea in the court by NHAI praying for a direction to the authorities to coordinate and take all steps to proceed with the Chennai Port-Maduravoyal Elevated Corridor project and complete the same within a time frame.
According to NHAI, the elevated project is the first of its kind in India with a length of 19 km. The NHAI, after obtaining necessary clearances, concurrences, no objection certificates and approvals had commenced the project in September 2010. It is to be completed by September 2013.
The estimated travel time from Chennai Port to Maduravoyal at a speed of 60 kmph would be 15 to 20 minutes, whereas the existing roads take more than two hours.
The alignment was finalised after taking into account all aspects of geometry, optimum utilisation of Cooum boundary and minimum acquisition of private land. The project, along the Cooum River, was mainly designed based on the requirements of the State to suit not only the port but also that of the general public.
However, after a change in the Government in May 2011, there has been no cooperation from the various departments of the State Government with regard to land acquisition, rehabilitation and re-settlement of the project-affected families for reasons best known to them.
The authorities concerned were not evincing any interest on this project and became averse to the same. By the Jan. 28 order, the PWD had urged the NHAI to obtain revised CRZ clearance and to carry out certain remedial measures such as drudging of 2 metres beyond the outer column and construction of retaining wall for a height of 3 to 5 metres in the extended portion.
The whole issue is likely to reach its crescendo on Aug. 19, when the State Government is expected to file its affidavit as directed by the Madras High Court.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Environment issues holding investment of Rs 50,000 crore in port development alone: ASSOCHAM study

Source: ASSOCHAM


- Efficiency of Indian ports need to improve, observes the trade body

Investment worth over Rs 45,000-50,000 crores is awaiting environmental clearances in the port sector alone with bulk of the plans stuck in Tamil Nadu, an ASSOCHAM study has revealed.
Several PSUs and private sector firms have lined up fresh investment in multi-purpose and specialised ports. However, the maximum of environment clearances are pending in regard to Tamil Nadu and Gujarat, the study which analysed the official data, suggested.
“At a time when there is a real dearth of bankable investment projects, keeping the projects in key infrastructure waiting does not speak well of the system involved”, said the chamber’s spokesman.
The data up to March, 2013 showed that a host of projects were pending green clearances for ports such as Kancheepuram, Udangudi, Vanagiri, Manapad and Cheyyar. Projects were also pending in states like Gujarat and Maharashtra.
The ASSOCHAM study noted that the impact of slowdown in the international commodity trade is divergent on different ports.
For instance, the average growth in cargo handled in Tamil Nadu ports has been quite low between 0.2 per cent and 3.2 per cent. With a coastline of 906 km, Tamil Nadu has three major ports at Chennai, Ennore and Tuticorin and 15 non-major ports including the L&T promoted facility at Kattupalli.
Likewise in Andhra Pradesh, the average trend growth in cargo handled has been dismal in the last three years with 2012-13 showing a decline of 1.9 per cent and the previous two years showing a meagre expansion of less than two per cent.
While Maharashtra has been a little better, growth in the state has also dropped to 3.4 per cent in 2012-13 from six per cent in the previous year, reflecting a slowdown in the economy.
Ban on export of iron ore seems to have taken a toll on cargo performance at Goa ports where cargo traffic plummeted to 21 millionn tonnes in 2012-13 from 60 million tonnes in 2011-12.
Karnataka managed to do well, while Kerala kept the falling trend.  In a somewhat a similar contrast, while Odisha managed to do well with 14 per cent growth, West Bengal saw a let- down with about seven per cent drop in cargo handled from its ports.
But Gujarat has registered growth with over nine-12 per cent growth. Likewise, the state has done better in terms of capacity creation.
The performance has been affected by slowdown as also the lack of business investment due to various reasons.
The study said that India does not figure in world’s top 20 container ports while eight of these are in China with Shanghai being number one.
Even as India’s global trade needs to become more competitive in terms of transaction costs, efficiency of Indian ports need to improve. The port efficiency has a major impact on transaction cost of shipping lines.
Although major Ports have improved their efficiency of operations over the last few years, the efficiency level of Indian ports is far from satisfactory when compared to several competing countries like China, said the ASSOCHAM paper.
All the same average Turnaround Time for all major ports improved from 8.10 days in 1990-91 to 3.63 days in 2005-06.This time again increased steadily to 5.29 days in 2010-11. In 2011-12, the average TRT declined to 4.56 days and further to 3.94 days in 2012-13.
The shipping industry is grappling with the slowdown in demand and the overall weak growth in advanced economies meant slower imports in developed regions. In 2012, imports grew at a modest 0.6 per cent, a sharp fall from the 5.0 per cent recorded in 2011.

Monday, August 12, 2013

‘Vikrant’ reborn in indigenous avtar

Source: MOD/PIB

- Launching of Vikrant is just a small step in a long journey: Antony
Amidst chanting of hymns from the Atharva Veda, Vikrant, India’s first aircraft carrier, decommissioned in January 1997, was reborn on Aug 12, as Mrs Elizabeth Antony, wife of the Defence Minister Mr AK Antony, christened India’s first Indigenous Aircraft Carrier (IAC) as ‘Vikrant’ meaning “courageous” or “victorious” in Sanskrit.
 In a colourful ceremony filled with traditional pomp and fervour at the Cochin Shipyard Limited (CSL) in Cochin, Mrs Antony launched ‘Vikrant’ in the presence of Mr AK Antony, the Minister of Shipping, Mr GK Vasan, the Chief of Naval Staff Admiral DK Joshi, the F-O-C in C Western Naval Command Vice Admiral Shekhar Sinha, Commander-in-Chief Southern Naval Command Vice Admiral Satish Soni, Chairman and Managing Director, CSL, Commodore (Retd) K Subramaniam and other officials of the Ministry of Defence and Ministry of Shipping.
In addition, a multitude of Naval officers, yard workers and a few members of the Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL), the manufacturers of the indigenous warship grade steel, were also present. 
At the launch, marking the end of Phase- I of the project, the imposing ramp of the 37,500 tonne Short Take off but Assisted Recovery (STOBAR) Carrier boasted the indigenous design and build capabilities of the country.
The ship has attained its designed length of about 260 m and is almost at its maximum breadth of 60 m. The main landing strip is ready. Over 80 % of the structure, containing about 2300 compartments has been fabricated, over 75 % has been erected, all the major machinery, such as the two LM2500 Gas Turbines developing a total power of 80 MW, the diesel alternators  capable of producing about 24 MW and the main gear box have been fitted.
Soon after Vikrant floated perfectly upright, she was launched out into the Ernakulam Channel in a pontoon assisted precision manoeuvre.  Vikrant was moved out of the building dock to be positioned in the refitting dock where the next Phase of outfitting will be completed. 
Describing the occasion as a ‘momentous’ one, Mr Antony said, “Today’s launching of the IAC marks just the first step in a long journey, but at the same time, an important one.”
He said it was indeed a proud moment for the country to witness our efforts at achieving self-reliance in the field of warship design and construction, as only a very few advanced countries in the world possess the capability to design and build aircraft carriers.
Mr Antony said we must continue the process of strengthening indigenous capability towards securing our maritime interests.
“Our Navy must continue to maintain high operational readiness at all times to ward off any likely misadventure against our national interests,” he said. 
The Defence Minister urged the Indian industry to participate whole-heartedly in shipbuilding programmes and further consolidate our strength in this field.
Speaking on the occasion, the Shipping Minister Mr GK Vasan said, “By launching this great warship, which is one of the most important ships for the Indian Navy, Indian shipbuilding has demonstrated its technical capability and expertise.”

The design and construction of the Indigenous Aircraft Carrier was sanctioned by the government in January 2003. The keel of the ship was laid on Feb 28, 2009 by Mr AK Antony.
Vikrant marks a special feather in indigenous defence capabilities- this being the first ever aircraft carrier to be designed by the Directorate of Naval Design of the Indian Navy, the first warship to be built by Cochin Shipyard Limited and the first warship to be built entirely using indigenously produced steel.
The construction of the ship is a truly pan Indian effort with active participation of private and public enterprises. The steel has come from SAIL’s plants in Raurkela in Orissa, Bokaro in Jharkand and Bhilai in Chattisgarh; the Main Switch Board, steering gear and water tight hatches have been manufactured by Larsen and Toubro in its plants in Mumbai and Talegaon; the high capacity air conditioning and refrigeration systems have been manufactured in Kirloskar’s plants in Pune;  most pumps have been supplied by Best and Crompton, Chennai; Bharat Heavy Engineering Limited (BHEL) is supplying the Integrated Platform Management System (IPMS); the massive gear box is supplied by Elecon in Gujarat; the tens of thousands of electrical cable is supplied by Nicco industries in Kokatta; Kolkatta is also where the ship’s anchor chain cable is manufactured.
Vikrant will be capable of operating an aircraft mix of the Russian MiG-29K and LCA (Navy) fighters being developed indigenously by HAL. Its helicopter component will include the Kamov 31 and the indigenously developed ALH helicopters.
The ship’s ability to sense and control a large air space around it will be enabled by modern C/D band Early Air Warning Radar, V/UHF Tactical Air Navigational and Direction Finding systems, jamming capabilities over the expected Electro Magnetic (EM) environment and Carrier Control Approach Radars to aid air operations. Long Range Surface to Air Missile (LR SAM) systems with Multi-Function Radar (MFR) and Close- In Weapon System (CIWS) will form the protective suite of the ship.
All weapon systems onboard the carrier will be integrated through an indigenous Combat Management System (CMS), being manufactured by Tata Power systems. The ship’s integration with Navy’s Network Centric Operations will provide force multiplication.
Design of this prestigious ship has been undertaken by the Directorate of Naval Design (DND) of the Indian Navy.
The seamless hull and smooth lines of the ship stand as testimony to the high production standards of Cochin Shipyard Limited (CSL).  CSL, a mini Ratna PSU, has earned a reputation for quality construction and timely delivery.
Till now, CSL had the distinction of building the largest ship in India  i.e., 93,500 tonne Aframax tankers. However, this complex integrated construction project enabled by a Rs 200 Crores infrastructure augmentation plan involving large cranes, workshops and heavy duty machinery has seen the shipyard maturing into a competent warship builder.
Vikrant will now enter the second phase of construction which will see the outfitting of the ship, fitment of various weapons and sensors, integration of the gigantic propulsion system  and integration of the aircraft complex (with the assistance of  M/s NDB of Russia).
The ship will then undergo extensive trials before she is handed over to the Indian Navy by around 2016-17.

About INS Vikrant
It may be recalled that at the time of attaining our Independence, our visionary leaders saw the centrality of a powerful Navy and set us on the right course by envisaging an aircraft carrier centred Indian Navy. INS Vikrant, India’s first aircraft carrier was acquired from Great Britain and commissioned on 04 Mar 1961. In its 36 years of glorious service INS Vikrant was at the centre of action in the 1971 operations for liberation of Bangladesh.
Having seen many years of service as a CATOBAR (Catapult Assisted Take Off but Arrested Recovery) carrier working an angled deck and operating Sea Hawks, Alizes and Seakings, INS Vikrant was transformed into a STOVL carrier to operate Sea Harrier jump jets. INS Vikrant was decommissioned on 31 Jan 1997, after 36 years of glorious service under the Indian ensign. With the launch of IAC, ‘Vikrant’ the Indian Navy is well on its way to demonstrate its comfort with the practiced art of trapped landings and angled deck operations.
Eom.Saravanan


Friday, August 9, 2013

கொழும்பு துறைமுக விஸ்தரிப்பு இந்தியத் துறைமுகங்களைப் பாதிக்குமா?


Source:http://www.bbc.co.uk/tamil/india/2013/08/130805_colomboportexpansion.shtml

இலங்கையின் கொழும்பு துறைமுகத்தில் சீன உதவியுடன் கட்டப்பட்ட புதிய முனயம் இன்று திறந்துவைக்கப்பட்டுள்ளது.
சுமார் 500 மிலியன் டாலர் செலவிலான இந்த திட்டம் பெருமளவு சீன உதவியுடன் நிறைவேற்றப்பட்டுள்ளது.
பெரிய கப்பல்கள் வந்து போவதற்கு வசதியாக இந்தப் புதிய முனையம் அமைக்கப்பட்டுள்ளது.

ஏற்கனவே ஹம்பாந்தோட்டையில் புதிய துறைமுகம் கட்டப்பட்டிருக்கும் நிலையில், கொழும்பு துறைமுகமும் விஸ்தரிக்கப்பட்டிருப்பது தென்னிந்திய மற்றும் சிங்கப்பூர் துறைமுகங்களுக்குக் கடும் போட்டியை ஏற்படுத்தும் என்று கூறப்படுகிறது.

கொழும்பு துறைமுக விஸ்தரிப்பு தென்னிந்திய துறைமுகங்களைப் பாதிக்கும் என்கிறார் சென்னையில் தனியார் சரக்கு நிறுவனம் ஒன்றின் ஆலோசகராகப் பணியாற்றும் கப்பல் தொழில் நிபுணர் கேப்டன் அவினாஷ்.
கொழும்பு துறைமுகம் இந்தியப் பெருங்கடலில் இருப்பதால், பிரதான கடல் வாணிகப் பாதைகளின் சந்தியில் அது பூகோளரீதியாகவே அமைந்திருக்கிறது. ஆனால், சென்னைத் துறைமுகத்துக்கு இந்த இயற்கையான அனுகூலம் இல்லை. மலாக்கா ஜலசந்தியிலிருந்து வரும் கப்பல்கள் அல்லது மேற்குக் கடற்பரப்பிலிருந்து கிழக்கு நோக்கி செல்லும் கப்பல்கள் சென்னை வரவேண்டுமானால் , அதற்காக ஒரு மாற்றுப் பாதையில் சுற்றிவரவேண்டியிருக்கிறது.
இந்த சுற்றுக்காகும் செலவை ஈடுகட்டவேண்டுமானால் சென்னை போன்ற இந்தியத் துறைமுகங்கள் தங்களது துறைமுகத்தில் கப்பல் நிற்பதற்காகும் செலவை குறைத்தால்தான் , இத்துறைமுகங்கள் கொழும்புடன் போட்டி போட முடியும் என்றார் கேப்டன் அவினாஷ்.
மேலும், கொழும்பு துறைமுகம் விஸ்தரிக்கப்பட்டதைப் போல இந்தியத் துறைமுகங்களின் வளர்ச்சிக்கான தெளிவான திட்டங்கள் இல்லை. கேரளத்தின் கொச்சியில் அமைக்கப்பட்டுள்ள வல்லர்பாடம் கண்டெயினர் முனையம் சரியான வகையில் அமல்படுத்தப்படவில்லை என்றார் அவினாஷ்.

பாதிப்பில்லை

தூத்துக்குடி துறைமுகமோ அல்லது பிற தென்னிந்திய துறைமுகங்களோ கொழும்பு துறைமுக விஸ்தரிப்பால் பாதிக்கப்படும் என்ற கருத்தை தூத்துக்குடி துறைமுகப் பயன்பாட்டளரும், அகில இந்திய வணிக சபையின் தலைவருமான ராஜா சங்கரலிங்கம் மறுக்கிறார்.

இந்தியத் துறைமுகங்கள் வேகமாக சரக்குகளை ஏற்றி, இறக்கும் செயல்பாடுகளைக் கொண்டவை என்று கூறும் இவர், மேலும், இந்தியப் பொருளாதாரம், ஒரு உற்பத்தி மையமாக இருந்து வரும் நிலையில், கொழும்பு துறைமுகம் விஸ்தரிக்கப்படுவதால், இந்தியத்துறைமுகங்கள் பெரிதும் பாதிக்கப்படாது என்றார்.


மேலும், தூத்துக்குடி துறைமுகத்தின் புறநகர் வளர்ச்சிக்காக மத்திய அரசு பெருந்தொகையை சமீபத்தில் ஒதுக்கியிருக்கிறது என்றும், தொடர்ந்து தூத்துக்குடி துறைமுகத்தினை ஆழப்படுத்தி, மேலும் அதிக கொள்ளளவுள்ள கப்பல்கள் வந்து போகும் வண்ணம் செய்யுமாறு மத்திய அரசுக்கு தாங்கள் கோரியிருப்பதாகவும் ராஜா சங்கரலிங்கம் கூறினார்.

Wholesale fish prices rose by 131% in past 5 years: ASSOCHAM

Source: ASSOCHAM
Mr D.S. Rawat, national secretary general of ASSOCHAM 


Wholesale fish prices rose by a whopping 131 per cent during past five years as India's growing appetite for fish owing to rising per-capita incomes, urbanisation and ever-evolving eating patterns is fast leading to depletion and over-exploitation of fish stocks in the country, apex industry body --the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM) said on August 9.

While index value of fish was just over 126 during 2008-09, it rose past 291 as of 2012-13 due to a combination of factors like falling fish catch owing to rising water pollution, dumping of plastic and other harmful materials, absence of organized retail in fish trade, persistence of age-old distribution system, post-harvest losses, rising operating costs due to unabated diesel price rise and other such reasons resulting in high wastage and spoilage of fisheries resources,” according to a sector-specific analysis of fish prices conducted by ASSOCHAM.

Even the growth of fish production has declined to half i.e. from about seven per cent in 2008-09 to just about 3.5 per cent during 2012-13, highlighted ASSOCHAM analysis.

“Wholesale inland fish prices rose by a whopping 200 per cent and marine fish prices rose by about 91 per cent during the aforesaid period,” said Mr D.S. Rawat, national secretary general of ASSOCHAM while releasing the chamber’s analysis.
Rising fish prices has made the business financially unviable for fishing community and all the stakeholders, traders, processors and others involved in fishing related ancillary operations,” said Mr Rawat.
Growing urbanization and advent of supermarkets has lead to growth in fish consumption across India but lack of poor post-harvesting equipment, inadequate food processing technology and storage facilities is bleeding the fishing industry and thereby significantly hampering its growth prospects.”
Besides, India's traditional fishing communities are over-exploiting coastal waters thereby leading to fast depletion of marine resources and shrinking catch from coastal regions.

In its analysis, ASSOCHAM has also highlighted that due to severe dearth of suitable fishing vessels fish stocks in India’s territorial deep-sea waters remain untapped leading to potential income loss to fishing community and other stakeholders.
Lack of proper post-harvest fish handling infrastructure in India leads to wastage of about 25 per cent of total fisheries resources thereby causing a staggering Rs 15,000 crore annual losses, according to ASSOCHAM.

Poor handling and processing of catch, inadequate packaging, and storage facilities clubbed with marketing malpractices and other related factors are leading to massive losses to India's worth Rs 61,000 crore marine and fish industry.

ASSOCHAM has advocated for carrying out eco-friendly and sustainable practices of fisheries resources, establish cold storage facilities and there is also the need to bring in regulations to curb over-exploitation in marine habitat.

With over 8,100 kilometers of marine coastline, four million hectares of reservoirs, two million hectares of brackish water and nearly 51,000 square kilometers of continental shelf area, India is ranked as the second largest fish producer in the world after China and accounts for nearly six per cent of global fish production of about 180 million tonnes.

In wake of the plummeting growth of fish production in India, ASSOCHAM has suggested developing technology for value addition and infrastructure for fish production based on public private partnership (PPP) model.

There is also a need to innovate and intensify methods to enhance production which in turn would help increase India’s share in global markets and increased foreign exchange earnings.

There is also the need to modernize fish markets across the country by setting up refrigerated storage facilities together with transport and handling/logistics support in the marketing centres.

Proper awareness and training about usage of latest technology must be imparted to fishermen so that they are able to commercially exploit fishery resources for domestic and export markets. Besides, the industry also needs to go through process of reengineering to be able to meet growing needs of domestic market for processed, packed and canned fish.

“More investments should be made in value added fish and marine products in ready-to-eat and ready-to-serve categories more so as growing domestic market also offers opportunity for such products in the fast growing retail sector,” highlighted the ASSOCHAM analysis.

There is also a need to nurture, protect and carefully exploit marine capture as the industry is directly linked to India's food and nutritional security.

ASSOCHAM has also called for an integrated approach for conservation and development of India's marine resources and has also recommended that utmost care should be exercised in judicious exploitation of marine resources thereby protecting the flora and fauna of the marine world.