Infrastructure Current Affairs - 2020

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Government unveils first phase of Station Redevelopment Programme

Union Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu unveiled the first phase of the ambitious Station Redevelopment Programme. It is the world’s largest transit-oriented development programme ever executed.

As part this programme, tenders are being floated for 23 of a total of the total 400 A1 and A category stations selected re-developing in the first phase.

Stations being modernised in 1st phase: Lokmanya Tilak, Pune, Visakhapatnam, Thane,Howrah, Faridabad, Jammu Tawi, Kamakhya, Secunderabad, Udaipur City, Vijaywada, Chennai Central, Ranchi,  Kozhikode, Bangalore Cantt, Yesvantpur, Bhopal, Mumbai Central, Bandra Terminus, Borivali and Indore.

Key Facts 

  • Station Redevelopment Programme is the biggest non-fare revenue generating programme being undertaken by Indian Railways.
  • Financial Model of the programme: It will be executed in a public-private-partnership (PPP) model through a fair bidding system.
  • Government will not incur any expenditure as the developer will be rebuilding the railway stations and maintaining it for 15 years.
  • In return, the developer would be granted 45 years’ leasing rights for the commercial properties developed at these stations. These properties could be hotels, malls, hospitals, among others.
  • Selection Process: These stations will be awarded to private developers under the so-called Swiss challenge method. It involves inviting proposal online and allowing rival bidders to beat that proposal.
  • Amenities at Revamped stations: escalators, elevators, digital signage, self-ticketing counters, executive lounges, walkways, luggage screening machines, free and paid WiFi, etc.
  • Commercial potential of the vacant Railway land at and near the stations will be leveraged to develop world-class stations.

Significance

The entire programme is estimated to attract investment of upto Rs 1 lakh crore from the developers. It will help Railways will generate a surplus of Rs 10,000 crore which can be invested in other modernisation programmes. Most of the pension funds in the world and a multilateral agency like World Bank are keen to participate in this project. It will benefit more than 100 cities and 16 million passengers per day across the country.

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Union Government gives nod for apex corridor development body

The Union Government has approved the re-designation of the Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor Project Implementation Trust Fund (DMICPTF) as National Industrial Corridor Development & Implementation Trust (NICDIT).

NICDIT will be the apex body to oversee integrated development of all industrial corridors across the country. It will implement all the five proposed industrial corridors, together covering 15 States.

Key Facts 
  • NICDIT will function under the administrative control of Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) i.e. Ministry of Commerce & Industry.
  • It will also coordinate all efforts of Union Government for the development of industrial corridor projects and will monitor their implementation.
  • It will help in bringing in holistic planning and development approach and sharing the learning from development of industrial corridors.
  • It has is given permission to utilise financial assistance already sanctioned and an additional sanctioned amount of Rs 1,584 crore within the extended period up to 31 March, 2022.
  • Besides, an Apex Monitoring Authority will be constituted under the chairpersonship of the Finance Minister to periodically review the activities of NICDIT and progress of the projects.
  • It will consist of Minister of Commerce & Industry, Minister of Railways, Minister of Road Transport & Highways, Minister of Shipping, Vice-Chairman of NITI Aayog and Chief Ministers of states concerned as members.

NICDIT will implement all the five proposed industrial corridors, together covering 15 States. The Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor, the first of the planned corridors, is under development. Other four corridors Bengaluru-Mumbai Economic Corridor, Chennai-Bengaluru Industrial Corridor, Amritsar-Kolkata Industrial Corridor and Vishakapatnam-Cheenai Industrial Corridor are in various stages of planning.

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