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HindustanTimes Fri,18 Apr 2014

Amritsar-Kolkata corridor should cover seven states: inter-ministerial group

PTI  New Delhi, September 19, 2013
First Published: 21:38 IST(19/9/2013) | Last Updated: 21:41 IST(19/9/2013)

The inter-ministerial group (IMG) to undertake preparatory work for setting up a Amritsar-Delhi-Kolkata Corridor (ADKIC) has suggested connecting the project to 20 cities in seven states with a budgetary support of Rs. 5,700 crore spread over 15 years.

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The IMG was mandated to examine the feasibility of setting up the corridor using the Eastern Dedicated Freight Corridor (EDFC) as a backbone and the structural and financing arrangements that would be required to operationalise it.

"After a series of meetings, the IMG has completed its work and has submitted its report, says a release from the Prime Minister's office (PMO).

The IMG, in its recommendations, has said the ADKIC be aligned to the EDFC and it pass through 20 cities in the states of Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal.

The ADKIC also proposes to leverage the existing highway system on this route and the inland water system being developed along national waterway-1, the release said.

In the first phase of the project, every state could promote at least one cluster of about 10 sq km area to be called the integrated manufacturing cluster (IMC), in which 40% area would be earmarked permanently for manufacturing and processing activities.

The ADKIC may use both the public-private partnership (PPP) approach and the non-PPP approach, the report said.

The non-PPP-able trunk infrastructure will be developed by the special purpose vehicle (SPV) or the implementation agency vested with the task of setting up the IMC through grant-in-aid, it said.

The IMG has also recommended the constitution of an apex monitoring authority, under the chairmanship of the union minister for commerce and industry, for overall guidance, planning and approvals.

It said the ADIC should be set up as a corporate entity, on the lines of Delhi Mumbai Industrial Corridor Development Corporation (DMICDC).

A dedicated cell under the chairmanship of the chief secretary/industrial development commissioner was also recommended at the state level.

At the cluster level, a SPV may be set up by the state governments for administration of clusters, the report said.

In the first phase, an estimated maximum financial commitment of about Rs. 5,749 crore over 15 years may be given for the construction of seven IMCs, each of 1,000 hectares.

These finances could be through budgetary support by the Centre, the report said. The IMG has recommended a two-stage approval mechanism, an 'in-principle' and final approval.

In order to finalise the next steps, the principal secretary will hold a meeting with members of the IMG and other relevant ministries on Friday, the release said.

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