Economy and Politics | MoEF orders studies of hydel projects

Economy and Politics | MoEF orders studies of hydel projects

New Delhi: The Ministry of Environment and Forests has commissioned feasibility studies of the hydro electric projects that are proposed on the rivers Bhagirathi and Alaknanda to IIT Roorkee and the Wildlife Institute of India, Dehradun.

Till now, environmental impact assessments of projects, including hydro power projects, have been done on a case-to-case basis. This is the first time any study will be done on a cumulative impact basis. The study would determine the requirement of minimum flow from the proposed and already commissioned hydro electric projects on these rivers in their entire stretch.

The Ministry has rejected hydro projects on Bhagirathi in the recent past, claiming they were stopping the natural flow of the river. The studies will also assess whether there will be a depletion of irrigation potential or availability of drinking water in habitations as a result of any project, impact on ground water and springs in the basin and whether any restrictions should be placed on the development of hydropower in the basin.

Padmaparna Ghosh


India to buy vertical take-off systems

New Delhi: The three defence services may soon acquire an unspecified number of vertical take-off unmanned aerial systems (VTUAs) each of which costs Rs3 crores on an average. It is however still unclear whether the three services will issue requests of information (RFIs) or issue a Letter of Request (LoR) to a particular player for the same. While an RFI would mean that the purchase would be open to competitive bidding, an LoR would mean that the equipment would be acquired through the Foreign Military Sale (FMS) route.

“This will be a tri-service acquisition which may be led by the navy," a defence ministry source said on the condition of anonymity.

Recent media reports had indicated that the Minstry of Defence would issue an LoR to the government to buy Northop Grumman’s MQ-8 Fire Scout VTUAs through the FMS route. Ministry sources have however not confirmed this.

Aman Malik


India’s defense purchase to rise to $80 billion by 2015: Deloitte

Bangalore: India will likely spend nearly $80 billion (Rs3.77 trillion) to purchase fighter aircraft and missiles by 2015, Deloitte Global Manufacturing Industry Group, part of global consultancy firm Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu, said in a report on Tuesday.

India’s defense budget for 2010-11 is $32 billion, including $13 billion for acquiring new weapon systems, equipment and services.

“The sheer volume of planned expenditure is expected to create new opportunities for global A&D (aerospace and defense) companies, as total spending will grow in absolute terms," said Kumar Kandaswami, leader-manufacturing industry for Deloitte in India. “Further, having a burgeoning spending on A&D and significant offset requirements, India is also looking for necessary technologies from these companies."

Staff writer


CBSE to provide skilled manpower to hospitality industry

New Delhi: The hospitality industry which has just 18,000 skilled man force will need 5 million trained personnel by 2022 and to bridge the skill gap the tourism ministry Tuesday signed a agreement with Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE).

Under the agreement the HRD ministry run CBSE will train students through a vocational course in collaboration with the National Council of Hotel Management and Catering Technology. Tourism minister Kumari Selja said the council will hand-hold and guide the schools for at least 4-5 years in which time it is envisaged that this new vocational stream will become an acceptable and self–sustaining model. She said, the Council has already designed the course curriculum for the 11th standard and that for the 12th standard will soon be ready.

HRD minister Kapil Sibal said joint certification on successful completion of the course will ensure industry reorganization for students who can then either enter the profession directly or take up the further course at undergraduate level, for which they will be provided due weightage.

Prashant Nanda