Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Monnet makes open offer for Orissa Sponge

Monnet group firm Mounteverest Trading & Investment (MTIL) on Wednesday made an offer to the shareholders of Orissa Sponge Iron & Steel to acquire additional 20 per cent stake in the company for up to Rs 189.10 crore.

MTIL hold around 15 per cent state in Orissa Sponge and offered to acquire aditional 20 per cent stake (61 lakh equity shares) at Rs 310 per share. The offer would open on April 4 and closes on April 23.

On February 24, MTIL had entered into a share purchase agreement with the TRF and TRFI for purchasing 54.20 lakh equity shares representing 27.10 per cent stake in Orissa Sponge at Rs 283 per share aggregating to Rs 153.38 crore, media report say.
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Thursday, February 19, 2009

Orissa files suit in SC over Andhra's Pollavaram project

The state government has filed an injunction suit in the Supreme Court on Wednesday seeking immediate suspension of work of Polavaram project.

The petition was filed because work is reportedly being continuing by Andhra Pradesh government despite repeated objections by the Orissa government.

Indira Sagar Polavaram multipurpose irrigation project would be built on river Godavari in Andhra Pradesh with cost of around Rs 10,150 crore. The project has been opposed by local residents nearby areas over fear of displacement, in Orissa and Chhattisgarh.
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Centre approves housing and drinking water project for Orissa

The Ministry of Urban Development has sanctioned 3,813 dwelling units for urban slums in eight towns under Integrated Housing and Slum Development programme (IHSDP) on Wednesday.

The ministry has declared the second phase for the construction of dwelling units in eight towns - Jharsuguda, Bolangir, Keonjhargarh, Baripada, Bhadrak, Bhawanipatna, Jeypore and sambalpur.

Under the the second phase, 3,813 dwelling units will be constructed in eight towns. The cost of an dwelling unit would be around one lakh rupees, this is the revised rate. Earlier, the government had proposed the cost at Rs 80, 000.

The centre has also sanctioned nine drinking project under Urban Infrastructure Development Scheme for Small and medium Towns. This project will be implemented in nine towns - Balasore, Bhawanipatna, Baripada, Bargarh, Nayagarh, Talcher, Dhenkanal , Phulbani and Chhatrapur.
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State Govt seeks Rs 1500 crore package to tackle slowdown

The state government has sought Rs 1500 crore package from the centre to tackle the economic slowdown. The Orissa finance minister Prafulla Ghadei has placed the demand with Montek Singh Ahluwalia the Deputy Chairman of Planning Commission.

There is impact of the global financial crisis on Indian economy and state economies. The global financial crisis has hit the revenue collection too.

Ghadei submitted a memorandum to Montek on Wednesday seeking special package for the state to tackle the economic slowdown. In the memorandum, Ghadei referred that the the revision of pay scales and pension has put a tremendous pressure on the state's finances.

However, around four lakh government employees and 2.49 lakh pensioner of the state are benefited with the revision as per pay commission recommendations.

There is impact of the global financial crisis on Indian economy and state economies. The global financial crisis has hit the revenue collection too.
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Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Birla Tyres again shuts production in Orissa unit

Birla Tyres, a unit of the BK Birla group company Kesoram Industries, has again closed its unit following bad market condition. For the third time the unit was closed. The factory will remain closed till Feb 28.

It is the impact of the global meltdown. There is fall in demand for its products, which is believed as the major reason to shut down the unit.

Earlier,Birla Tyres had closed down its Orissa plan temporarily till January 31 due the the impact of global financial crisis and the falling in the sales.

Over 4,000 people including 2,200 regular employees are working in the Birla Tyre plant, located in Balasore.

The company unit in Orissa has capacity of 1.50 million tyres, tubes and flaps per year. The unit has been exporting around 30 per cent of its production to 43 countries in the world.

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Friday, February 13, 2009

Finance Minister presents draft budget of Rs 15,054.02 crore

The Orissa Finance Minister Prafulla Chandra Ghadai has presented a draft budget of Rs 15,054.02 crore for the first four months of the financial year in the assembly. The assembly General Election and Assembly election are round the corner.

The state government has prepared a draft budget for the state. Presenting the draft budget for the four month the finance minister said prominence had been given to poverty eradication, health, irrigation, education, rural development and scholarship for ST and SC students. The government has estimated a budget of Rs 36,744.78 crore for the fiscal year.

As per the budget the state government would spend Rs 120 crore under Biju KBK Yojna, Rs 1153 crore under Accelerated Irrigation benefit programmes, Rs 1133.52 crore for state share of CSP, and the government will also be spending of Rs 500 crore under Rural Infrastructure Development fund for the development of rural infrastructure.

In the budget there is a provision for expenditure of Rs 72 crore and Rs 218.01 crore for Madhubabu Pension Yojana and under planned and non-plan expenditure respectively. The state government also proposed Rs 1 crore for the establishment of Agriculture college at Bhawanipatna and Rs 4 crore to set up Paralal Maharaja Engineering College at Berahampur.

Other highlights of the Budget are:
  • Rs 847 .85 crore for supplying Rs 2 per kg rice,
  • Rs 165 crore for Gopabandhu Gramin Yojana,
  • Rs 100 crore for Rastriya Krishi Vikash Yojana,
  • Rs 132.5 crore for Jawaharlal Nehru national Urban Renewal Mission,
  • Rs 324 crore for Backward Region Grant fund,
  • Rs 21 crore for maintenance of Critical Flood Control Projects,
  • Rs 43.31 crore for Recruitment of 4822 Police Constables and sepoys,
  • Rs 9.41 crore for Engagement of 2000 Advasi youths as Special Police Officers in Gajapati, Rayagada, Koraput, Malkangiri and Kandhamal districts,
  • Rs 60 crore for completion of Railway over bridge at Lingaraj Road passenger halt,
  • Rs 10 crore for railway over bridge near IIT site and Road to IIT site,
  • Rs 2 crore for Jeeban Vikash,
  • Rs 3.80 crore for Technical education and quality improvement programme,
  • Rs 13.86 crore for special infrastructure for naxal affected areas and
  • Rs 3 crore for grant to remote sensing application centre for preparation of Publicity films and Documentaries
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Thursday, February 12, 2009

Orissa targets poverty reduction by 15% duriung 11th plan

The Economic Survey 2008-09 was tabled in the Orissa Assembly on Wednesday. According to an esstimated by Planning Commission, 39.8 per cent of the popluation in the state are living blow povertly line (BPL).

Orissa is targeting reduction of poverty by 15 percent during the 11th plan as it remains the poorest among the country's major states, the survey says.

Orissa is followed by Bihar (32.5 percent) and Madhya Pradesh (32.4 percent). The report says there is reduction in poverty from 47.15 per cent in 1999-2000 to 39.8 per cent in 2004-05 in the state.

The state government had under taken several measures reduce the poverty. Per capita income in the state has rose to Rs 16,195 in 2007-08 from Rs 13,096 in 2006-07.
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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Orissa sings MoU with RBI for revival of Urban Co-operative Banks

The state government has singed memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Reserve Bank of India over revival of Urban Co-operative Banks (UCBs) in the state.

The secretary, co-operation department of the Orissa government, Taradatt and executive director, RBI, V S Das signed the document on Tuesday.

As per the MoU, the RBI constitued a State Level Task Force (TAFCUB) for UCBs in Orissa. The RBI constituted TAFCUB would look after the proper functioning and revival of all 14 UCBs in Orissa.

Kaza Sudhakar, regional director (Orissa), Reserve Bank of India, is the Chairman of the task force. K.C.Mohanty, Registrar of Cooperative Societies (RCS), Government of Orissa is its co-chairman of the task force.

This is expected to improve the operational efficiency of the UCBs and quality of management information systems.
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Arjun Singh to lay foundation stone of IIT Orissa on Thursday

Human Resource Development Minister Arjun Singh will lay the foundation stone of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) nearby Argul village, around 20 km from the capitial on Thursday.

Singh was scheduled to lay the foundation stone on Wednesday but the programme was rescheduled. Total six new IITs are to be set up in the nation, and IIT in Bhubaneswar is one of them. The foundation stone will be laid in the proposed 936 acre campus on the outskirts of Bhubaneswar.
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Orissa launches Rs 400 crore livelihood project

The state government on Tuesday launched Rs 400 crore World Bank aided livelihood project -Targeted Rural Initiatives for Poverty Termination and Infrastructure (TRIPTI) .

The TRIPTI project would be implemented in 38 blocks of ten district in the state. Launching the project, the Chief Minister said that the project would cover 1020 Gram Panchyats and around 12,54,607 poor families would be benefited.

The funds would be spent on institution building, community investment, livelihood promotion and project management. Recently, there were reports about the state government of spending only 32 per cent of total allocation. The success of the project depends on the allocation and disbursement of the fund into the development works.
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Sunday, February 8, 2009

Nun rape case: one more arrested

Police arrested one more person for his alleged involvement in the rape of a nun during the communal violence last year in the state's Kandhamal district. So far the police have arrested eleven people in connection with the nun rape case.

The investigation officer D K Mohanty has informed to media that on police arrested
Jayaban Digal, a residence of Sainapada village on Saturday night. The 29-year-old Catholic nun was attacked by a mob and raped Aug 24. She filed a complaint with the police two days later.
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Saturday, February 7, 2009

Orissa Govt. to sign MoU with 8 power comapnies

The Orissa government will sign memorandum of understanding with eight power companies for production of 9780 MW. The total value of these MoU would estimated around 42 crore and 23 thousand rupees.
  • Sahara India Power Corporation (1320 Mw) to set up thermal power plant at Turla in Bolangir district with an investment of Rs 5604 crore.
  • Ind-Barath Energy Utkal Limited (700 Mw) to set up thermal power plant at Sahajbahal near Banaharpali in Jharsuguda district with an investment of Rs 3,150 crore;
  • Jindal Steel and Power Ltd. (1320 Mw) to set up a thermal power plant at Athamallik tehsil in Angul district with an investment of Rs 5940 crore;
  • Visaka Thermal Power Pvt. Ltd., (1100 Mw ) plans to set up coal based power plant at Bhandaripokhari or Banto block in Bhadrakh district at an investment of Rs 4810 crore;
  • Kalinga Energy (1000 Mw);
  • Arati Steel (500 Mw);
  • Chambal Infrastructures and Ventures Ltd. (1200 Mw);
However, sources indicate that one or two more companies may be included in this list.
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Friday, February 6, 2009

HC dismisses petitions over delimitation

The Orissa High Court dismissed the six writ petitions challenging the delimitation and reservation of various words within Cuttack Municipal Corporation limits on Friday.

The petition were filed by Dayanidhi Lenka and five others.
The bench comprising Justices IM Quddusi and Kumari Sanju Panda also went on to impose a fine of Rs 10,000 on each and directed them to deposit the amount with the Orissa State Legal Services Authority, according to media reports.

Considering the reports submitted by the Collector of Cuttack and the Secretary of State Election Commission ruling out anomalies in the delimitation exercise, the court delivered judgement.
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Thursday, February 5, 2009

Orissa Govt. allocates Rs 2817 cr for mass education

In order to improve the mass education at primary and secondary level the Orissa government has allotted Rs 2817 crore in the annual budget says Sanjib Sahu, School and Mass Education Minister.

The minister said that there were measures under Education Grant Scheme to proivde employment opportunities to as many as 22 thousand teachers. and to open 1087 new high schools in each of the 6234 pancyhayats in the state.

Sahu inaugurated a three-day conference of headmasters at Bonai, Rourkela. Speaking on the occasion, Sahu stressed for the need of education in all panchayats of the state.
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OTTET to set up telemedicine centres in Orissa

The Orissa Trust of Technical Education and Training (OTTET) has announced the plans for setting up telemedicine centres at the village level across Orissa. Around 51 thousand villages would be covered under this plan in next three years.

The nodal officer of Telemedicine of SGPGI Prof SK Mishra has presented the plans in a workshop inaugurated by the Chief Secretary AK Tripathy in the capital. The telemedicine project to be undertaken in a PPP mode in collaboration with the State Government and Sanjay Gandhi Post-Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences (SGPGI), Lucknow.

The centres would not help the poor people of the state but also provide employment to around one lakh unemployed youth. The plan will help to deliver better health services in the rural areas in particular to those are unable to access the medical facilities.
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Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Birla Tyres resumes production in Orissa unit

Birla Tyres, a unit of the BK Birla group company Kesoram Industries, resumes its production from the Orissa unit from Monday. This would a big time for the employees those were not paid during the close down.

Birla Tyres had closed down its Orissa plan temporarily till January 31 due the the impact of global financial crisis and the falling in the sales. Over 4,000 people including 2,200 regular employees are working in the Birla Tyre plant, located in Balasore.

The company unit in Orissa has capacity of1.50 million tyres, tubes and flaps per year. The unit has been exporting around 30 per cent of its production to 43 countries in the world.
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Orissa govt to set up two anti-terrorism schools

In order to train police personnel of the state over anti-terrorism techniques, the state will set up two counter insurgency and anti-terrorism schools in Orissa. Out of two proposed schools, one will be set up in Koraput district, while place for other is not declared.

Ten such institutes to be set up across the nation and the due would be set up in Orissa. Selected police officers and security personnel will impart specialized training in different aspects of counter-insurgency and anti-terrorism operations in order to produce the required manpower reserve to counter the menace.

Koraput is one of the districts of the state is affected by Maoist insurgency, was thought to be an ideal location for the elite institute. Where the selected personnel would learn various techniques like guerrilla and jungle warfare apart from training over use of high-tech gadgets, modern weaponry and state-of-the-art communication equipment.
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Monday, February 2, 2009

Orissa Cabinet: 253 more high schools to get block grant

The Orissa cabinet meeting on Sunday approved the block grant for 253 high schools under the one GP (gram panchayat) one school scheme.

As per the approval the 37 eligible private high of the total list of 253 high schools under the scheme would get 60 per cent grant from block, with effect from April 1, 2008. The state government would spend around Rs 12.50 crore for this purpose.

Other major decisions are:
  • The cabinet agreed for amendment of Orissa Government Land Settlement Act, 1962. Easy for govt to sell or convert land (gramkantha, khasmail, nazrul and anabadi) in the areas of Western Orissa, Cuttack, Chandbali, Talcher Ganjam , Koraput and Puri for industrialization.
  • Exempts taxes (under VAT) on goods to be used on the rehabilitation and reconstruction works in the flood-affected areas in the state.
  • Agreed for the amendment in the Orissa Municipal Act. The changes will allow anyone to file a petition challenging the election matter in 45 days instead of the stipulated 15 days.
  • Rejected the proposal by Institute of Chartered Financial Analysts of India (ICFAI) for setting up multi-disciplinary university at Jatnai. In 2007, ICFAI had signed MoU with state government. The bill to be re-examined.
  • Agreed to give equal status to ESI hospital doctors as that of Government doctors. During the entry level, they would also be regarded as Junior class-1 and specialists would avail Rs 3,000 additional allowances.
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Orissa cabinet approves new policy to boost small industries

In order to boost the employment in the state, the Orissa Cabinet cleared the policy for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs).

The policy broad-bases growth of MSMEs in conjunction with Industrial Policy Resolution (IPR)-2007. The cabinet also insisted for reservation of 20 per cent land in all industrial estates, parks and corridors for MSMEs.

The Cabinet has also cleared the proposal for providing subsidy of 10 per cent for investment
up to Rs 8 lakh and 12 per cent for investment of Rs 12 lakh. And also agreed to restructure the Orissa Small Industries Corporation (OSIC).

OSIC has recorded a growth of 20 per cent during last two years while the turnover of Rs 216 with a profit of Rs 3.08 crore was recorded for the year 2007-08.
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