Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Cleanliness Drive at Nagarayan

Along with various initiatives being taken by NKDA for New Town during the "Parichhannata Week" (citizen meet at Mela Ground, Special Discussion at Business Club, Interactions through Associations and rally), at the UD Department building at Salt Lake ("Nagarayan", at DF8 Salt Lake) too we discussed and formed committees at each of the 6 floors with senior officers as Co-ordinators and Nodal Officers and staff. We intend to award a letter of appreciation to the best floor team at the end of the week on Sep 5.
* * *
Millennium Post dt 30 August 2016

Millennium Post dt 30 Aug 2016

Times of India dt 30 Aug 2016

Aajkal dt 30 Aug 2016

Khabar 365 dt 30 Aug 2016

Khabar 365 dt 30 Aug 2016

Bartaman dt 30 Aug 2016

Monday, August 29, 2016

Four Events Flagged off

This morning, sharp at 10am, Minister Firhad Hakim flagged off several events. The advertisement released in several papers is given above. Few photographs (courtesy Sanjit Sharma) are given below.

* * *
(Top & Below) Ei Samay dt 29 Aug 2016

HT dt 29 Aug 2016
Times of India dt 29 August 2016
Asian Age dt 29 August 2016
Times of India dt 29 Aug 2016

HT dt 29 Aug 2016

HT dt 29 Aug 2016

Sunday, August 28, 2016

DPR for Safe New Town

In pursuance of State Government's "Safe Drive, Save Live" campaign, we have done an analysis of traffic accident data for last 3 years' data and plotted the accident prone spots. This was shared with the police at NKDA in a meeting held last Friday where Shri Gyanwant Singh, IPS CP Bidhannagar, DC Traffic, other police officers and officers of Hidco / NKDA were present. The map is as follows:

Road Map of New Town: red dots show accident-prone junctions. Size of circle represents gravity of problem.

It was decided that BUIDL (A JV between UD Department and IL&FS) would do a Detailed Project Report (DPR) on steps required to be taken to cope with the unique issues of New Town that has to take care of trunk traffic to Airport from Kolkata, pockets of dense habitation (Action Area 1, around City Centre 2, around Sukhobrishti and around Unitech/ DLF/ Eco Space) and underused wide good roads. The conflict happens when speeding vehicles in relatively less populated areas clash with dense traffic areas. BUIDL has been requested to co-ordinate with and take inputs from Hidco, NKDA, Police and Transport Department. A joint field inspection is scheduled on Mondat 29th August.

Even before the survey and report are started, certain broad agreements emerged after studying the map:
1. Three auto-manual signals to be erected by NKDA in the first phase (Jatragachi Bridge, Jagardanga Crossing and Akankshya More)
2. Auto Number Plate Recognition and Red Light Violation Detection devices to be installed by NKDA at three points (New Town Bus Terminus, Rabindra Tirtha junction and Chinar Park Crossing)
3. CCTVs to be installed by Police at six points (City Centre 2, Box Bringe entry, Jatragachi phari, Nawabpur crossing, Axis Mall Crossing and in front of Unitech)
4. Four bus bays to be constructed by Hidco (Nawabpur Crossing, City Centre 2, Noapara Crossing and Unitech frontage)
5. Rubberised rumble strips at few points on Service Roads
6. Height barriers at some entry points
7. Restriction on entry of lorries in New Town between 6am to 9pm in general.
8. Identification of Bus / Lorry Parking ground area for night parking.

* * *
Khabar 365 dt 28 August 2016

ToI dt 28 August 2016

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Smart Waste Bins

We got a demonstration yesterday on smart bins. A sensor is located at the top of a large plastic beam which through an ultrasonic sensor would indicate on a GIS map when the bin is filing up. Thus an efficient collection system would evolve from a central control room monitor.
I requested them to demonstrate 5 or so smart dustbins in Eco Park.
* * *
Anandabazar dt 27 Aug 16

Times of India dt 27 August 2016

Khabar 365 dt 27 AAugust 2016

Millennium Post dt 27 August 2016

Millennium Post dt 27 August 2016

Friday, August 26, 2016

National Conference on New Towns

Day before yesterday, we started on a new visioning exercise for New Town. This was based on a letter dated 22 August 2016 of Chief Secretary to all departments to prepare Vision and Mission ducuments for the long, medium and long term. The letter is being circulated to all Development Authorities from UD Department. Of these, New Town Kolkata Development Authority (NKDA) has started the exercise with the help of IIT Kharagpur.
Dr T.N.Majumdar of IIT Kharagpur gave a presentation on a draft inception idea. All senior officers of Hidco and NKDA were present. In the presentation Dr Majumdar highlighted that new inequalities were being created in cities around the world with high profile corporate functions on the one hand and low skilled low wage mostly contractual services. This called for a dual approach to city development, with a Housing-Mobility trade-off for low wage labour. Indeed, I remarked at this point, the number of commuting persons to New Town is 200%of the resident population. I also remarked that problems of developing new cities were rather peculiar and similar and we coulld draw lessons from and compare experiences with such other similar cities like Lavasa, Amby Valley, Navi Mumbai,  Amravati, Naya Raipur and the like. We decided to hold an experience sharing national workshop in January 2017 in association with IIT.

* * *

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Organic Market to be set up by Agri-Marketing Department

An 18 kottah plot of land beside the Major Arterial road was allotted by the Hidco Board to the Agricultural Marketing Department for setting u an Organic Market in New Town. I spoke to Mr Rajesh Sinha, IAS Pr Secretary and learnt that they have already started design process.
* * *
Millennium Post dt 24 August 2016

Times of India dt 24 August 2016

Anandabazar dt 24 August 2016

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Smart Poles

Last Saturday, I held a long meeting seeking information on Smart Poles from various stakeholders. The matter arose as follows. I'd go a proposal from the electrical wing of Hidco on setting up LED street lights in few streets of New Town. I thought that we should explore the idea of using smart poles for these LED street lights where we can install CCTV, WiFi, traffic sensors, air pollution monitoring, motion detecting energy savers, distress buttons for emergencies, road information displays, and even mobile phone towers. The meeting went very  well and we were informed of best practices in Bhopal, Navi Mumbai and elsewhere in the world. Every participant was advised to give concrete suggestions within a week on how to take this forward in New Town, either on a 'Proof of Concept' basis or on Pilot Basis.

I will hold a meeting with traffic police on Friday afternoon to further refine these ideas so that we can use the electric street poles to makethe streets more safe and secure using technology and smart policing.
* * *
Millennium Post dt 23 Aug 2016

Ei Samay dt 23Aug 2016

Anandabazar dt 23 Aug 2016

Monday, August 22, 2016

Digital Wallet for New Town

Last Saturday, the Hidco Board approved the proposal for getting into an MoU with PayTM, one of the the lead digital Wallet provider in India. Its facility will enable users to pay for Eco Park/ Mother's Wax Museum/ Movies at Nazrul Tirtha, Cafe Ekante etc through digital means. This will not only eliminate the problem of change, issues of dealing with cash (accounting and safe transport every day to banks) and convenience. Indeed, this is part of a larger architecture of encouraging Indian citizens to reduce dependence on cash so as to avoid issues relating to fake notes by ISI etc agencies from Pakistan etc. In addition, users would also get bonus PayTM money from special schemes when these are launched by PayTM. With this, a movie goer to Nazrul Tirtha of a theatre lover to Rabindra Tirtha (on Sundays) would have the options of paying by PayTM, Credit / Debit Card, online through BookMyShow and of course also by cash.

Giving choices to the citizen, to maximise her convenience.
* * *
HT page 1 dated 22 Aug 2016

Ei Samay dt 22 August 2016

Aajkal dt 22 August 2016

Khabar 365 dt 22 Aug 2016

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Model of Wi Fi Hotspot

Table-top 3D model of prototype Wi Fi hotspots
Based on the drawings of IIT Kharagpur, a metallic 2 ft prototype was made and exhibited yesterday by Suman Neogy, GM, Hidco. The flat base is for sitting, the leaf-like structure will act as antenna and a shade. After showing to Prof Debapratim Pandit of IIT, a full model will be first located at first rotary of New own near the bus stand.
* * *
Corporate Treasure Hunt being flagged of on 21
Aug 2016 at Rabindra Tirtha
55 corporate teams participated todayin a Corporate Treasure Hunt event today morning from Rabindra Tirrtha. This this the second year in New Town: last year, it took off from Eco Space. Clues would be texted by SMS at various times and eight locations in Kolkata have to be visited and tokens collected. The total run is 80 km and the hunt is to be completed within 150 minutes to 230 minutes. On gets penalty for coming early. There are no points for coming early or ahead of others. AA complex point system determines the winner.

Hidco joined the event managers (Kolkata on Wheels) in a bid to propagate the "Safe Drive, Save Life" campaign of the government. In my short address to motorists at Rabindra Tirtha before the start of the race, I mentioned that driving and drinking must not be mixed, that mobiles should not be used whille driving and that seat belts should be fastened while on the move.
* * *
Hindustan Times dt 21 August 2016

Friday, August 19, 2016

Traffic Safety

At EZCC, Bidhannagar today. Saurav Chakraborty of
Karmayog is seen in the pic. Karmayog is creating
nursery in New Town.

I was invited to attend a programme at EZCC by CP Bidhannagar on 'Safe Drive, Save Life' campaign. I mentioned that there will be a Safe Drive campaign on Sunday morning at New Town too, in collaboration with Kolkata on Wheels, who are doing a corporate treasure hunt on Sunday from Rabindra Tirtha
* * *
Ei Samay dt 19 August 2016

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Gitabitan by Hidco /SSDA

Theme Town at Shantiniketan will be done by Hidco in collaboration with Sriniketan Shantiniketan Development Authority. All components of Green City Mission will be executed in this town which will reflect the culture of Bengal and the ethos of Rabindranath's vision.
A government order to this effect was issued yesterday by UD Deprtment
* * *
Millennium Post dt 17 August 2016
Khabar 365 dt 17 August 2016

Monday, August 15, 2016

Nazrul Tirtha 2 on Independence Day

It was good to see that the engineering wing led by GM(E)2 Arup Ghosh had achieved the target of completing the second movie hall in Nazrul Tirtha by 15 August 2016. It has 101 seats and is called Nazrultirtha-2 Hall. It is fully air-conditioned, with Dolby Digital 7.1 sound system, acoustic walls and aesthetically desgned by Abindesign. The projection system will be installed soon and we plan to show the first movie within the month. The Cafe Ekante counter is also almost ready. Integration with BookMyShow will be done by next week.
* * *
I hoisted flags at Hidco Bhavan, NKDA and UD this morning. Pictures:

* * *
Khabar 365 dt 15 Aug 2016

Khabar 365 dt 15 August 2016
HT dt 15 August 2016