|Monday, August 21, 2017
VISAKHAPATNAM AIRPORT UNDERGOES WIDE SCALE EXPANSION AND DEVELOPMENT : Visakhapatnam International Airport is under massive expansion. The project announced last year has already showed success. Six new parking bays have been set up to facilitate the night parking requirements here. As planned earlier there is an increase in the number of early morning flights. Presently the aerobridge can accommodate not more than six aircrafts at a time. The work on creating additional bays has almost been completed as indicated by the airport director. It is expected to be ready by th end of this month.
Going by reports, the number of international flights has been increased massively from 55,634 in the year 2014-15 to 1,12,298 in the year 2015-16. The airport in Vizag has seen an increase in the number of domestic passengers from 10,40,963 in 2014-15 to 16,85,400 in the year 2015-16. The Goods and Services Tax has had a favourable impact. It has made travelling by air cheaper than earlier. This has contributed to the increasing passenger count. The international flights have also been increased by 50 per cent. As of now, there are three international flights to Dubai, Kuala Lumpur and Singapore being operated from the city’s airport. In addition to this there will be Vizag-Colombo flight coming up which will be operated by the Air Lanka.
The increase in connectivity of flights from Vizag to 14 other domestic destinations makes capacity addition at the airport necessary. The airport is likely to witness the expansion of the airport by increasing the number of terminals. The check in areas will be streamlined soon with the festival season coming up. This expansion is being done by the Union Government. The expansion is by the government spending around Rs 28 crores for this. The airport at Bhogapuram area in Vizianagaram is most likely to take another five years for development and operation.
KGH DOCTORS BLAME MEDICAL CORPORATION FOR PROJECT DELAYS : Several projects of King George Hospital (KGH) and Andhra Medical College (AMC) are getting inordinately delayed, with doctors across several departments blaming the AP Medical Services Infrastructure Development Corporation (APMSIDC) for its ''lackadaisical attitude'', allegations that were promptly refuted by the corporation.
APMSIDC, which is entrusted with civil works and constructions, allegedly delayed the opening of the multi-disciplinary research (MDR) unit and is dragging its feet on the access route to the emergency medicine department (EMD) and Andhra Medical College. However, APMSIDC officials refuted the allegations, saying the delay is being caused due to issues pertaining to approvals and modifications in plans.
"The MDR unit, which was supposed to house the labs of the microbiology and pathology departments in AMC, was supposed to be built by June 30. The old neurology ward was earmarked for this central government-funded project. Already, Rs 20 lakh has been spent on renovating the old ward to make it suitable for the proposed MDR unit. Nearly two months have passed since the deadline but the research unit is still not ready. We had ordered for equipment and there is no place to even keep them till the unit becomes functional," a doctor said requesting anonymity.
A professor from another department added, "Though the department was inaugurated in June, patients cannot be taken there because the road leading to the EMD has been dug up. For the last two years, the approach road to AMC ahead of Rajendra Prasad ward, was blocked with construction material lying all over the place. So, all doctors and other AMC staff have to take a roundabout route to enter the main AMC office building and give their biometric attendance. As they have to cross the mortuary on their way, they get delayed because of the crowd, police vehicles and dead bodies. The usual approach road to AMC should be cleared immediately."
AMC principal Dr Sudhakar agreed that the projects are incomplete and are past the deadline. "We are waiting for a number of projects to be completed by APMSIDC," he said.
Asked about the delay, APMSIDC executive engineer Umesh Kumar said, "The work of MDR unit is almost complete. There were some modifications in the original plan as required by AMC and it increased the workload. As for the CSR block, we were waiting for permission from Atomic Energy Regulatory Board for the last one year for the oncology unit in the cellar. We got it now and are waiting for further clearance from the AERB for the nuclear medicine unit on the first floor. For the EMD, we are constructing a retaining wall and then a concrete cement road leading to it will be built. Some other contractors are involved in minor works. We hope to get it completed in a fortnight and also plan to open the original approach road to AMC within three months."
BKS SEEKS CHANGES IN FARM POLICY TO ENCOURAGE AGRO UNITS : Bharatiya Kisan Manch organising secretary Dinesh Dattatraya Kulkarni on Sunday called for major reforms in the agriculture sector to encourage agro industries and increase land-holding of rural farmers to solve the unemployment problem.
Delivering the keynote address at a meeting organised by Sri Gopalrao Thakur Smaraka Samithi on ''Agriculture and Grameena Bharat Today: Challenges and Solutions,'' he said during the British rule the rural-based agriculture was slowly damaged to exploit the masses. Before their entry, several businesses used to be dependent on farmers and the rural areas used to be self-sufficient.
Mr. Kulkarni said the Englishmen created forest, police, revenue and other departments to extract money in different forms from the rural farmers. Giving credit to rural farmers, he said the farmers were totally self-reliant due to judicious use of water and involvement of locals in farming operations.
Mr. Kulkarni said the government should ensure remunerative price to the farmers, procure their produce at the declared price and develop a marketing system. The demand for loan waiver by the farmers arose following the failure of the powers-that-be to provide remunerative price. "Many problems including unemployment and farmers'' suicide cropped up with agriculture by small land-holding farmers turning unviable. To solve unemployment problem and arrest urban migration, the government should encourage group farming and by cooperatives in rural areas," he said.
The meeting felicitated Bharatiya Kisan Sangh members Vadlamudi Brahmananda Rao, Pappu Sriram Murthy and Duvvuru Satyanarayana Murthy.
LOKESH TO INAUGURATE CYBER TOWER ON AUG. 24 : The new building of Tech Mahindra named as Cyber Tower and taken on lease by the AP Electronics and IT Agency (APEITA) will be inaugurated by IT Minister Nara Lokesh on August 24.
A top official of APEITA, an autonomous organisation floated by the State government to promote investments in electronics and IT sector, told that Mr. Lokesh had given consent to inaugurate the super-structure located in the heart of the city. The new building has one lakh sft. The space on the 11-floor building (including parking space in basement) with the state-of-the-art facilities has been taken on lease by APEITA to encourage investments in IT.
Visakhapatnam is the main IT destination in Andhra Pradesh with a turnover of Rs.2,000 crore. It is home to big players including Tech Mahindra, Wipro, HSBC, IBM, Concentrix and WNS.
Space constraint for allotment to investors with plug and play facilities, the government has taken in addition to Tech Mahindra''s new facility, three buildings on lease in the city. This includes a building belonging to Mahati Software at Cyber Valley located at Rushikonda which was subsequently converted into Fintech Tower, 24,000 sft at VUDA building at Seethammadhara and 35,000 sft at a commercial building on VIP road.
APEITA is now in advance stage of constructing Millennium Tower at Rushikonda near the Incubation Hut where two lakh sft of built-up area is being created in a IoT-enabled cyclone-resistant super-structure at a cost of Rs.180 crore. The construction is being executed through the APIIC.