Sikkim’s First Airport Pakyong!!

Introduction
 
Pakyong Airport is the Greenfield Airport the State Capital Gangtok. It is India’s 100th Operational Airport in India. It is approximately 4500 ft from the sea level. One of the 5 biggest Airports in India. First Greenfield Airport in the Northeast. Only Airport in the State. One of the tallest reinforced soil structures in the world.
Background of the Project
Sikkim was the only state which didn’t have any operational Airport of its own. They either used the Bagdogra Airport, which is 124 Kms in the Neighbouring State of West Bengal or the Paro Airport in the Bhutan. So in 2008 the Cabinet Committee gave the approval for the development of the Pakyong Airport. The Foundation stone was laid by the then Civil Aviation Minister, Prafulla Patel.
The Airport was estimated to be complete till 2012. But due to the agitations from the local people this was halted till 2014. The local people demanded proper rehabilitation and security. Later in 2014 the AAI took initiative, discussed with the people and gave some part of the compensation. This helped in starting the work again. But in 2015 the villagers again protested and the project was again halted.  Later in 2015 the state Government signed a MOU with the AAI and promised to help the villagers in safe and securely shifting and rehabilitating. This helped the AAI to finally start it’s work till the end of 2015. Due to this protests and the landslides upslope of the runway resulted in the Escalation of its cost from 309 Crore Rupees to 605 Crore Rupees.
On 24th September 2018, India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the
Airport. And flights will start commencing from 4th of October between Guwahati and Kolkata.
Strategic Importance
Last year we saw some tensions going on regarding the Doklam region with China. Doklam is the region with 3 International Borders. And it is near to this Airport within 54kms. So this Airport might play an Important Strategic role in Future.
Twitter Pics

Rafale Deal in Short!

 

Why we need Rafale Fighter Jets?
India has Pakistan to its west and China to its East. So when there is a war like condition India should have the potential to fight on both the fronts at the same time. To be able to fight on both fronts we need 42-45 squadrons of Fighter Jets and each squadron has 16-18 jets each. So the Indian Air Forces continuously demanded the Government to purchase new Fighter Jets to increase its potential. According to a report India has only 34 squadrons, out of which only 31 are in working condition. Also it is important to note that these squadrons contain 11 squadrons of Sukhoi 30 MKI. These are the latest fighter jets in our Air Force. Other jets in the Air Force are either getting upgraded or getting retired. Till 2020 It is expected that around 14 squadrons will get retired. So till 2020 Air Force will have total 20 plus 3 more squadrons of Sukhoi 30 MKI, which will be made and given to the Air Forces by HAL(Hindustan Aeronautics Limited) till 2020. So this total 23 Squadrons are around half the estimated potential. So the Indian Air Forces continuously forced the Government to purchase new Fighter Jets to increase its potential.
 
What is Rafale Deal?
In 2000 Government decided to purchase 126 Miraj 2000 Jets, but later this deal was changed. And they decided to purchased 126 MMRCA( Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft). In 2007 decided to purchase 126 MMRCA, for which Manmohan Singh announced a RFP (Request For Proposal). According to this proposal all the Air Craft Companies in the world had to explain their model with all its features in a PPT. This was well known around the world as the Indian-MMRCA tender. This deal was estimated around 1 Lakh 26 thousand Crore Rupees. It was renowned as the Mother of all Defense Deal in the World. All the Air Craft manufacturing Companies in the world gave their presentation in response to the RFP. A number of jets were assessed and in 2011 two Fighter gets were selected, one was the EuroFighter Typhoon and other was The Rafale of Dassault. In 2012 Finally Indian Government gave L1 bidder to Dassault Aviation. L1 bidder is the least bidder and finally conversation started with them on Rafale Deal. According to the deal India wanted 18 Jets to be delivered in the Flyover condition. And other 108 jets to be made in India by the Dassault in partnership with the HAL(Hindustan Aeronautics Limited). one most important point of the deal was that India wanted Dassault to take the quality control responsibility of the 108 jets to be made by the HAL. Talks were going on between Dassault and HAL. But nothing went okay as Dassault did not want to take the responsibility of the jets made by HAL in India. Also there were differences in the expenses of both the Companies. Due to this, the deal couldn’t take place till 2014.
In 2014 also the talks continued between Dassault and Modi Govt. In April 2015 PM Modi went to France and in a press conference he declared that India will purchase 36 Rafale Jets through France Government. So, on 30 July 2015 the MMRCA tender was finally withdrawn. And it was cleared that now the deal is not with the Dassault but with the France Government.
Why is there Controversy around this Deal?
As per the opposition there are various changes in the deal on which there are few allegations by the opposition on the Government. We will discuss these Allegations one by one.
1. Less number of Jets : As per the UPA there were 126 jets proposed whereas NDA’s deal has only 36 jets to be delivered in the fly way condition. As per the Press conference from the Govt, they said that 36 jets will be received in fly way condition and others will be manufactured in India with the help if its offset partner.
2. 2-3 times more pay to the Dassault: As per the opposition Modi Govt’s estimated cost of the deal is 60,000 Crores which is thrice the estimated cost of the UPA’s deal. Now Opposition demanded an answer on this increased cost. Govt says that as it is a Defense deal its cost and other details will not be made public.
3. Technological loss : As per the previous deal Dassault would have had made 108 jets with the partnership of HAL in India, and this would finally help HAL to learn some new Technology. But as per the new deal all the 36 jets will be coming to India in the fly way condition.
4. Financial favor to Reliance: Opposition claimed that the Modi Govt helped the Reliance Company by purchasing the jets at higher cost than the Earlier deal. Govt cleared its stand that India will get more things than before. Dassault took the responsibility that every year there would be minimum 75% jets in the working condition and it will make all the spare parts available till next 7 years.
France Govt Statement
5. Holande’s Remark: One of the allegation is that the former President of the France said that,” India proposed a service group and Dassault negotiated with the Ambani”. He also said that,” We did not have a choice” and ” We did not have a say in this”. In Defense of this The France Govt issued a statement saying that the Govt is in no manner involved in the choice of the Indian Industrial Partners and will be selected by the French Companies. The French Company has full freedom to choose their Indian Industrial Partner. Also the Dassault Aviation has also issued a clarification stating that they have decided to partner withe the India’s Reliance Group.
Dassault’s Statement

New India with Bullet Speed…!

As we have seen that a couple of weeks ago PM Narendra Modi along with The Japanese PM Shinzo Abe inaugurated the most prestigious project of Mumbai-Ahmedabad Bullet Train in India.

Now India is developing and is running on the track of Prosperity with the bullet speed.

But how many of us know that when will the bullet train be on track for us? Or how many of us know about how costly is this project? Are these trains really affordable for India? If not then what’s the Importance of Bullet Train in India from the Global perspective? In this special article we will be covering all important facts along with its significance from a common man’s perspective.

MAHSRC : MUMBAI-AHMEDABAD HIGH SPEED RAILWAY CORRIDOR

Motive: To Transform and Revolutionise The Railways

Recommendation of Japanese Indian Survey Team : A Shinkanese Style System for the MA line with Automatic Train Control 

Top Speeds: 320-350Kmph

Speed option 1:- High Speed 2.58 hrs

Speed option 2:- Rapid High Speed 2.07 hrs

Fares Range:- ₹3000 – ₹5000 /- passenger

Commutators and Capacity

         Initially

  • Each train – 10 cars
  • Accommodation Capacity – 750 people

         Later

  • Each train – 16 cars
  • Accommodation Capacity – 1200 people
Inside Cars

Initial Estimates: Passengers expected anually – 1.6 Crores
By 2023: Passengers expected daily – 36000

By 2050: Passengers expected daily – 1.6 Lakhs

Stations:

In Maharashtra: Mumbai, Thane, Virar, Bhoisar

In Gujarat: Vapi, Bilimora, Surat, Bharich, Vadodara, Anand, Ahmedabad, Sabarmati.

Important locations

Route

  • 15 Km- Underground in Mumbai
  • 453 Km- Overhead
  • 18 Km- Elevation
  • 30 Km- Under Thane Creek between Thane and Badam
  • 7 Km- Undersea

TOTAL= 523 Kms

Funding

  • 110000 Cr- Total Project cost
  • 88000 Cr- Loan from Japan
  • 22000 Cr- From States of Maharashtra and Gujarat
  • 0.01% Rate of Interest p.c.p.a from JICA for 81% of total project cost
  • Duration – Repaid in 50 years
  • Grace Period – 15 years
  • 20% of Components used by Corridors will be supplied by Japan and Manufactured in India

Project Completion

  • Commencement date – Aug 2022
  • To be Completed – Dec 2023

Job Creation : 15 Lakhs new Jobs in India

Training

  • High Speed Rail Training Institutes will train about 4000 Technical Staff of the Bullet Train Project.
  • Japan Govt offered training of IR Officials in Japan reserving fully funded seats for The MS course in Universities of Japan for them.

Future Plans : Extend The Corridors to Pune and Nashik.

Biggest Advantage : It cuts the present 7-8 hours of travel to 2 hours.

Authors Comment

  • There is no doubt that there will be a revolution in the field of Railways due to this Project. Jobs will increase, trade between Maharashtra and Gujarat will increase, but only when this project will get completed as soon as possible and the trains are on track with passengers.
  • To clear some doubts about its costing is that our country is going to invest only 22000 Cr rupees for the project which is going to be contributed by the two states. For this project we have given a loan of 88000 Cr by JICA with 50 years of refund period and that only with 0.01%. Therefore this project is a challenge to the Indian Economy.
  • It is said that both the states are going to be benefited from this project but my assumptions differ a bit. To be loud and clear Gujarat will be the most profitable in the Success of this project. Because we can see that there are only 4 stops in Maharashtra while 8 stops in Gujarat. So more people in Gujarat will get benefitted.
  • Also it’s a the time to check what amount traffic is there on this route and are those traffic really going to afford this service at the prescribed cost.
  • Let’s consider that the Project is completed and the trains are on track but who are the passengers actually going to travel through this trains? Frankly speaking there will be more people coming to Mumbai as compared to the people going to Gujarat.
  • Most importantly there is an emerging option to the Economic Capital in its own Neighborhood.
  • From a Common man’s perspective it’s not for him directly but indirectly it’s for him in the face of increasing business. Because common man will be benefited only when his boss has some business to do. And if this Bullet Train increases the business then surely the common man will indirectly be benefited.
  • This project will sure bring a reform in the Trade, Railways and Infrastructure of our Nation. This will not only boost the nation’s economy but also in the daily life of our people.

Political Perspective

“Modiji is the Master of Present days GUERRILLA tactics ( Ganimi Kawa in marathi ).”

“I have a strong faith in it because with Japanese money, Japanese efforts, with minimum rate of interest of 0.01% the Project will be completed. And you know who is going to be the most benefited? It seems to be the two mentioned states.. but mostly its his native one.”


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Jai Hind…!
Jai Bharat…!