Saturday, December 30, 2017


(Above and Below) Salt Lake Telegraph dt 29 Dec 2017

Prompted by the news in today's Salt Lake Telegraph, we compiled a list below. These however do not include events and soft launches such as Sahaj Path / Jamini Roy Paintings on Metro Pillars, Exhibition of Original Jamini Roy Paintings in Nazrul Tirtha, Book Fair, New Town Mela, Pous Mela, Kolkata International Film Festival, Corporate Golf Championship, Women's Marathon, Children's Day etc 
List of projects inaugurated during 2017
Sl No.
Name of the projects
Date of Inauguration

Rooftop Organic Garden (Roof Katha)
Japanese Forest

Sonar Kella Udyan

Self Help Ground Market near Eco Space

Hawkers Market near DCP Office, Action Area –I,

Bike Taxi at New Town

12 bay Golf Driving Range at Golf Arena

Double Decker Boat (Santa Monika)

Sculpture Garden on History of Bengal with light and sound system

Biswa Bangla Convention Centre

Replica of Seven Wonders

Nazrultritha Hall 3

Bus Stand in Action Area IIIG

Cycle Share
GPS Enabled dockless public cycle sharing scheme
Jatragachhi Road over bridge

Nazrultritha Archive

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Cattle Shelter

Cattle Shelter in New Town:
Being Commissined

Traffic accidents sometimes occur in trying to save stray cattle on the speedways of New Town. The Biswa Bangla Sarani has witnessed a handful of accidents in recent times leading to injury to cattle as also persons. We have held meetings with nearby village Pradhans and tried to create awareness of not letting loose stray cattle, but the incidents of cows and buffaloes coming onto the busy streets of New Town have not been altogether eliminated.

So, alongwith continued sensitisation of cattle owners of neighbouring areas, NKDA issued a circular 0n 7.12.2017 under section 51 (1) of the NKDA Act saying that NKDA will forcibly remove stray cattle from roads if this causes encroachment of public roads.

 A new cattle shed has been just built in Action Area 1D of New Town (see pic above) and a committee has been formed with veterinary doctors and officers of NKDA and local thana to determine the modalities such as feed sourcing, care of cattle kept in the shelter till its return to the owner, the costs to be recovered and for giving training to staff to be deployed. In the first meeting of the committee held on 19th Dec, it was decided that staff will be trained at Haringhata unit of the A.R.D. Department's unit.

We expect the cattle shelter to start functioning from first quarter of 2018. We expect that New Town roads to be safer from stray cattle distractions thereafter.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Events and Festivals in New Town

Last week, we had an administrative meeting with police, engineers, transport, Hidco amd NKDA officers to deal with the anticipated rush of visitors on 24-25th Dec 2017 and 1 Jan 2018.
Footfalls in Eco Park and surroundings are increasing by the day especially in this festival season and new attractions such as the Seven Wonders and Light-n-Sound Shows at the Sculpture Garden, the footfalls are more by several degrees compared to last year. On top of this, a mega musical event (Arijit Singh Show) on 24th Dec which is a Sunday and the Christmas Eve will make things quite unmanageable unless we plan for it.

Some of the measures that will be taken in this period include additional 20 ticket counters, deployment of police officers and civil officers, manning of watch towers, setting up of May I Help You Booths, additional blocks of temporary toilets and special car parking and lighting arrangements. Additional 100 or so buses will also be deployed on special days.

Given below is a list of events that will happen in this part of the year. Incidentally, yesterday, Hon'ble CM took a meeting of ministers and secretaries of various departments at Nabanna for necessary actions for the BGBS 2018 on 16-17 Jan 2018 which will be held at BBCC at New Town
* * *
List of Events in New Town

23 Dec to 31 Dec 2017
3.30 p.m. to 9.30 p.m.
New Town Mela Ground
New Town Meal 2017

4 Jan  to 14 Jan 2018
12 noon to 8 p.m.
New Town Mela Ground
New Town Boi Mela
Book Fair

23 Dec to 31 Dec 2017
6 p.m. to 9.30 p.m.
Opp. New Town Business Club
Marudhar Mela
Rajasthani Folk Festival

16 Dec 2017
7.00 p.m.
New Town Business Club
sitar recital
By Mr.  Rohan Das Gupta

24 Dec 2017
6.00 p.m. onwards
New Town Business Club
Xmas Eve
Xmas carols, fashion show and musical performance by IMAN

31 Dec 2017
7.00 p.m. onwards
New Town Business Club
New Year Eve
performance by Durnibar and Priyani Vani from Bollywood and followed by DG

23 Dec 2017 to 1 Jan 2018
1.00 p.m to 10.00 p.m.
New Town Business Club
Special Menu and Bar Tender special bar tender cocktail
Café Ekante Special

17 Dec 2017
9.30 am onwards
Biswa Bangal Convention Centre
ISA Foundation,
Spiritual Talk

15-17 Dec 2017
On going 
Biswa Bangal Convention Centre
Indian Dental Association

19 Dec, 2017
9.30 am to 1:00 p.m.
Biswa Bangal Convention Centre
Spiritual Talk

20 Dec 2017
9.30 a.m to 5 p.m.
Biswa Bangal Convention Centre
IT related

24 – 25 Dec 2017
1.00 p.m. to 4.p.m.
Café Ekante
Special XMAS buffet
Rs. 700 to 800/- only

31 Dec  2017 and 1st Jan  2018
1.00 p.m. to 4.p.m.
Café Ekante
Special New Year buffet
Rs. 700 to 800/- only

17 Dec 2017
4:00 p.m onwards
Eco Park
DG performance
Country Netherland

24 Dec 2017
5p.m. onwards
Eco Park
performance by Arijit Singh
Bollywood celebrity

19 – 20 Dec, 2017
12 noon onwards
Eco Park
CLSV Kolkata 2017-
Display of commercial Vehicle e
Organised by Green Ideaz

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Nazrul Archive to open on 20th Dec 2017

Panel in Nazrul Tirtha's Hall 3
Nazrul Tirtha Hall 3 (NT3 in short) has been specially built with a semi-oval table with chairs, small comfortable viewer gallery and a special rear row of recliner chairs. This will be used for preview of films before their release by producers. A meeting with them will be held on 20th Decemeber evening after the inauguration of the new Nazrul Archive by Minister Firhad Hakim same day at 5pm.

A write up on the Nazrul Archive as drafted by Curator (NT) is given below.

PS: Newspaper clippings are being regularly posted at
* * *

Kazi Nazrul Islam, known as the ‘Rebel Poet’ in Bengali literature and the ‘Bulbul’ or Nightingale of Bengali Music, was one of the most colorful personalities of undivided Bengal between 1920 and 1942. His role in freeing modern Bengali poetry from an unsuccessful imitation of Rabindranath Tagore was significant. His poems, songs, novels, short stories, plays and political activities against various forms of oppression, slavery, communalism, feudalism and colonialism forced the British Government not only to ban many of his books but also to put him in prison.

Since dedicated to the memory of this remarkable and iconic Bengali poet and musician, Nazrultirtha, a project of WB HIDCO, has set up a library and an exhaustive digital archive which has been the repository of the details of the poet’s life and time and his creative world to facilitate the researchers in finding out all the details of references relevant to the poet and his activities.


The first step for making such a Resource Centre has been setting up a library on Kazi Nazrul Islam which would contain books by and on Kazi Nazrul Islam along with Bengali literature, art and music of the contemporary period.  The library can be housed in a part of the room in the 2nd floor of Nazrultirtha (room opposite to the lift). 

Digital Archive

In thousand years of Bengali music, Nazrul was perhaps the most original creative talent.  By fusing the elements of North Indian Classical Music with tradition whose basis was primarily folk and not merely because of the large number of songs that he wrote, Nazrul made Bengali music a part of the longer tradition of the music of the Indian sub-continent.  His lyrics and melody freed the Bengali music from its earlier mould.  Like modern Bengali poetry, Nazrul was a pioneer in modern Bengali music as well.  It may be mentioned here that during 1939 different recording companies in Kolkata issued a total of 1000 records, 1648 of which were Nazrul songs and the total number of his unrecorded songs is perhaps twice as much.

The digital archive with six desktops and one server will function in the same room  where the library has been set up. Initially, all the out of print books scattered in the old libraries of Kolkata and suburbs have been digitized with a camera.  The out of print books would include the first prints  of Nazrul’s own books , magazines Nazrul edited,  magazines on Nazrul,  manuscripts, notations of Nazrul’s songs along with original songs (poems),  letters written by and to Nazrul, advertisements, booklets on Nazrul’s record, photos of record labels/covers, script of dramas where Nazrul’s songs/poems have been used.,  copies of Betar Jagat, journal of All Indian Radio,  when Nazrul was an employee of All India Radio etc., Nazrul’s songs in records, cinema and radio which include photographs of the artists, singers, music composers and those who inspired Nazrul to become a great composer, the manuscript of the songs written by Nazrul and notations of Nazrul’s songs, recorded songs of Nazrul (both as a singer and a composer in the contemporary films).The archive will also have an audio visual section where all the recorded songs of Nazrul will be archived along with the information on the songs, the films by Nazrul and videographed interviews of eminent Nazrul scholars. The researchers would have an access to all such information either through internet or email with a nominal payment or they may come directly to the archive and make a search sitting in front of the desktops.

Friday, December 1, 2017

Future of Blockchain in India

Prof Dr Bart Preenel, Belgium, Prof Dr Kouichi Samurai, Japan, me, Satyam Lokam , Microsoft and J A Chowdhury, AP. At ISI Panel discussion today. .

There was a panel discussion today at Indian Statistical Institute. This was at the end of a 3-day workshop on Blockchain. I attended the inaugural tutorial lecture and another on coding. Today I was at the panel discussion.
I learnt many things and i mentioned that on Wednesday 6th Dec we would have a strategy discussion to chalk out Bengal's approach.

Some key takeaways:
- The Bitcoin bubble will probably burst and it would be risky to deal in ICOs (initial Coin Offerings) and Cryptocurrency in the public sector.
- A government backed cryptocurrency with matching assets would be better than normal physical currencies as it would be less fungible and a traceable trail (because of embedded hash functions) and so chance of theft and black money would be less. There was a discussion on payment tokens for Self Help Groups using cryptocurrency. Japan has been trying a version of J-currency in this fashion
- Estonia and Sweeden are doing good work on blockchains. Dubai is also forging ahead.
- There are promising e-governance applications like smart contracts, land registry, car ownership, driving licences etc
- Crowdsourced infrastructure funding was also discussed.
- Bank / financial institution cybersecurity could be strengthened by blockchains
- Supply chain management
- International money transfers in real time (few seconds)

Energy Savings in Street Lights by Smart Technology

Street No 333, New Town. With energy
saver on (top) and off (bottom)

The idea of this pilot path breaking project is to switch off one third of street lights until and unless a car passes.
The challenge was to see that a person or a cattle should not trigger on the lights that are supposede to be switched on only when a car passes. So traditional motion sensors, IR sensors or photo-electric and light based sensors were ruled out. Ruled out also was any pressure sensitive trigger because bullock carts, for example, can trigger the mechanism.
So we thought of eddy currents, earth's magnetic field and recalled that the car is made of metal .
The sensor is based on a copper loop and embedded underneath the surface of the road. One at one end of the road on the entry lane, and one on the other lane of the road, again at the entry lane.
When a car enters Street 333, it disturbs the linked terrestrial magnetism linked to the embedded coil and generates an eddy current. This is amplified and used to switch on the till-then-unlit street lights. It switches off after 5 minutes automatically through a timer mechanism, 5 minutes being the average time required for a car to traverse he 1 km length of road no 333.
I saw it in operation yesterday. Working fine.
Few details:
Street no 333 is between Biswa Bangla Sarani near Bagjola Canal and connects to Major Arterial Road near Alia University/ Amity University.
39 light poles, 80 LED Street Light  Assemblies. 52 such light assemblies (read bulbs in simple terms !) connected to sensors. Total estimated cost savings Rs 2 lakhs per year

Monday, November 20, 2017

Senior Living in Rajarhat New Town

Eco Park Toy Train Ride: For the Young and the Senior

Rajarhat New Town is designed for all, young and old. That is why there are Sonar Kella Park, Vivek Tirtha and Shishu Tirtha for the Children but also Swapna Bhor for the Seniors.  New Town Business Club and star hotels in New Town co-exist with Swapna Bhor and Snehodiya, the a new generation independent living habitat expected to be commissioned in 2018.
Swapna Bhor consists of a long walking path around a large lush green lawn. There are handrails in the pathway and tactile projections on the path. Four golden Buddhas, two aviaries and a large central aquarium add a sense of tranquillity and peaceful living. Garden swings and bamboo covered gazebos allows members to enjoy nature. Laughing arena, kitchen garden and pet shop allow networking among members. An e-Health clinic with modern diagnostic devices offer health check-up facilities within the campus.

The community building is a stunning architecture reminiscent of British India’s pavilions on the race course. Overlooking a large green playground, its first floor wide balcony offers a ringside view of what goes on in the greens below. Two air-conditioned community halls adorned with original paintings and tasteful interiors host cultural events, educative talks and dance performances every now and then. The ground floor has a reading room and library with a coffee shop, where book releases are organised on and off, reminding one of the Oxfordbookstore in Park Street or Delhi. The adjoining games room is privy to many indoor games and competitions on carom generate enthusiastic participation. Group tours and Sunday evening functions are very popular among the 500 members of Swapna Bhor, the only dedicated seniors’ facility of its kind in India.

Opposite Swapna Bhor, across the road on the northern side, a 100 room independent living habitat is being built. Application forms are on sale. There are 100 plus AC rooms, each with an attached restroom, a sitting/living space and a bedroom, furnished in a senior friendly manner. Common facilities and lounge on each floor, attendant in every two floors, basic support services and add-on ones. Tastefully decorated on the rural Bangla cottages stacked one above the other, two floors even have its own walking space balcony.

Snehodiya and Swapno Bhor will complement each other in ways that have not happened anywhere in the country in terms of adding value for a second innings in one’s life.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Residential Plots

In the Hidco stall at Realty Expo now being held at Netaji Indoor Stadium we are displaying many innovative models being adopted to cater to different segments of the state and society. This is an age of personalisation and we think that products must follow the individual's preferences.

The most innovative example out on display is the residential plots at Gitabitan Township at Santiniketan. There are over 400 plots but 154 are right now put out for application. More than 500 brochures have been sold and completed applications are being accepted in designated bank branches. Lottery will be held to determine the allottees. The point to note - the innovativeness - is that the pots will be given with sanctioned building plans. Thus the owner doesn't have to engage an architect, get all clearances and apply for sanction of the plan. The plot with a sanctioned plan will be allotted together. The owner will also be given the option of getting the house made through a govt agency (SSDA) at a pre-fixed cost, of which there will be three or more options depending on finishing preferences. Of course, the owner will also be free to engage her own agency or worksmen too.

An equally innovative approach is about allotment of suites / rooms in Snehodiya, a habitat for senior citizens in New Town, located just opposite to Swapna Bhor, the Seniors' Park. You pay an amount (say Rs 25 lakhs) initially but get back 75% on vacating it, no matter how long you actually occupy. Thus, upon the demise of an occupant, 75% of the money is to be received back by the nominee who can then use it to buy her / his own property. Or if the occupant shifts and vacates. Once vacant, the suite is to be reallotted to another senior applicant. No interest however is payable and food / housekeeping charges are payable monthly.

And perhaps for the first time, we are putting up 25 residential plots on e-auction. This was based on our experience that for 75 plots in the same area of New Town, for the HIG category, there were about 1:30 applicants. Thus, for every plot, there were 29 dissatisfied persons. Now they can participate in an e-auction that allows an applicant who pays the EMD of Rs 1.5 lakhs 25 opportunities, if he / she so likes to apply, of outbidding other bidders. Te last date of application for appearing in the e-auction is in the last week of this month (Nov 2017).

Details are being explained in the Hidco pavilion at Netaji Indoor Stadium.