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Bill to set up Maritime University in Monsoon Session

Written by: Staff

New Delhi, July 3 (UNI) A bill seeking to set up the National Maritime University at Chennai will be introduced in the Monsoon Session of Parliament.

''The Bill for creation of the national Maritime University is in the final stages of approval by the Government and will be tabled in the ensuing Monsoon Session of Parliament for its consideration,'' Shipping, Road Transport and Highways Minister T R Baalu was informed at a meeting of the review committee of his ministry here today.

Matters relating to the setting up of the National Maritime Academy were also reviewed by the Minister.

To speed up the preparatory works for setting up of the National Maritime University, Mr Baalu ordered formation of an Empowered Committee by the National Maritime Academy, which would initiate suitable action for selection and preparation of a Detailed Project Report.

Mr. Baalu also reviewed the status of implementation of the ambitious Sethusamudram Ship Channel Project SSCP), with Mr N K Raghupathy, Chairman&Managing Director, Sethusamudram Corporation Limited (SCL), and other senior officers of the Ministry.

Mr Raghupathy informed that four international bidders had participated in the bidding process and the price bids were proposed to be opened by July 15.

He also informed that the SCL intends to issue the formal work order to the successful bidder by August 15.

On the dredging works being carried out by the Dredging Corporation of India for the SSCP, Mr. Raghupathy said a total of 5.98 million cubic metres had been dredged, and at the present pace of work, the possibility of partial commissioning of the project with a limited depth of around 8 metres by January 1, 2008 could be explored, allowing passage of vessels which would need a draft of up to 7 metres to cover principally coastal feeder vessels.

Mr Baalu instructed the Secretary (Shipping) to hold a meeting with the Secretaries of the Department of Ports and the Department of Fisheries, Government of Tamil Nadu, on Wednesday on the follow up action to be taken for development of Nagapattinam port and development of a multipurpose port at Rameshwaram, fisheries harbours at Nagapattinam, Muthupet, Sethubhavachantram, Tondi and Mukaiyur, for which the SCL has agreed to provide adequate funds.

Mr Raghupathy informed the Minister that the training programme under the Coastal Community Development Programme of the SCL was launched on July one.

Under the programme, 600 fishermen would be trained with about 2.75 lakh training days during July 2006 and July 2007.


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