Skip to main content

Gujarat's Ghogha-Dahej ferry service reportedly in danger due to problems in dredging

By Nandini K Oza*
Prime Minister Narendra Modi likes to inaugurate projects and at times even before they are fully completed. The inauguration of the Sardar Sarovar Project (SSP) just before the Gujarat assembly elections in 2017 is one such case. The canal network of the SSP is yet to be completed.
Another project which was inaugurated by Mr. Modi just before the Gujarat elections in 2017 was the Ghogha Dahej RO-RO ferry service. The inauguration of the ferry service was done with great fanfare and the project called the dream project and an invaluable gift to India (click HERE).
However, startling facts regarding the ferry service have been reported by one of the leading newspapers of Gujarat, "Saurashtra Samachar" March 14, 2018. I translate important excerpts from the Gujarati news paper for wider readership here:
“OBSTACLE: There is a requirement of hundred meters channel for the ferry as against which only fifty meters has been constructed.
"Ghogha –Dahej ferry service in danger due to problems in dredging.
"The sand excavated by dredging is being dumped just nearby.
"The problem of silting in Ghogha and Dahej has become dangerous.
"Saurashtra Samachar, Ground Report:
"Bhavnagar: To start Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s dream project Ghogha- Dahej RO-RO ferry in April, the joint secretary of Shipping Ministry has taken to task the officers of GMB (Gujarat Maritime Board) and has given an ultimatum to complete all the works by 31st of March. However the reality is absolutely the opposite.
"In order to navigate the RO-RO ship, a five meter deep and hundred meters wide navigation channel is required. By 13th of March, out of the hundred meters channel, only fifty meters of channel has been completed. Besides, as per the agreement contract, the sand excavated by dredging which had to be dumped five kilometers inside the sea, has been dumped just nearby. Because of this, the navigation channel is getting more dangerous. Four meters high heaps of sand and hard creta have been created just close to the water due to which the natural flow of water has been obstructed. And experts are voicing fear that in summer sea currents more severe than the ordinary will be experienced in this channel. Due to financial problems between the GMB and the contractor, the work had become slow and its direct impact is being seen on the project.
"Ro-Ro ferry as decided is of the size of 23 meters, and as per the rules, the width of the channel should be four times more than the ferry but that has not happened.
"Violation of Environmental Clearance too has taken place:
"Concerned ministries of the Central Government had given necessary permissions for dredging for the Ghogha-Dahej, Ro-Ro Ferry service and some conditions were imposed. The environmental clearance given was for the dredging of four million cubic meters. Till date dredging of 3.70 million cubic meter has been completed and yet out of a hundred meters of channel, only fifty meters has been completed. Dredging work on both sides, at Ghogha and Dahej remains to be completed. Under such circumstances there is clearly a possibility of the violation of environmental clearance. Besides this, once the channel is completed, survey will have to be carried out by National Agency and then navigation chart is to be prepared, and accordingly the work of installing boya remains to be done.”
As I write this, I am reminded of the serious concerns raised by experts about the rush to commission a NTPC project in Uttar Pradesh in which forty two workers died due to a blast (click HERE).
---
First published in http://nandinioza.blogspot.in

Comments

Anonymous said…
Modiji has the frenzy for collecting brownie points with an eye on forthcoming elections.
Be it universities, AIIMS, Narmada water, Black money from abroad, to name a few are his legacy people will see on forget at a later date.

TRENDING

Young environmentalist's arrest 'sinister', even parents not told of her whereabouts

By Our Representative  The Coalition for Environmental Justice in India (CEJI), a civil society network, has said that it is “highly disturbing” that Disha Ravi, a young woman climate activist from Bengaluru was “picked up” in what is referred to as a “closely guarded operation” of the Delhi police. Disha, 21, has been remanded to police custody for five days after she was taken from Bengaluru to Delhi.

Mukesh Ambani's earnings during Covid 'can lift' 40% informal workers out of poverty

By Dr Gian Singh*  The Inequality Virus Report released by Oxfam, a non-profit organization, on January 25, 2021 on the growing inequalities in different parts of the world, sheds light on the growing economic, educational, healthcare and gender inequalities in India. The report has revealed that the wealth of billionaires has increased by 35 per cent during the lockdown period in the country.

US forensic revelation enough evidence to release Sudha Bharadwaj, others: Civicus

Counterview Desk  Civicus, a Johannesburg-based global alliance of civil society organisations and activists claiming to have presence in 175 countries with 9,000 members and working for strengthening citizen action, has sought immediate release of Sudha Bharadwaj, arrested in 2018 under the anti-terror Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) and accused of having links with the banned Communist Party of India (Maoist).

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur* Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.

Golwalkar's views on tricolour, martyrs, minorities, caste as per RSS archives

By Shamsul Islam*  First time in the history of independent India, the in-charge minister of the Cultural Ministry in the current Modi government, Prahlad Singh Patel, has glorified MS Golwalkar, second supremo of the RSS and the most prominent ideologue of the RSS till date, on his birth anniversary, February 19. In a tweet he wrote : “Remembering a great thinker, scholar, and remarkable leader #MSGolwalkar on his birth anniversary. His thoughts will remain a source of inspiration & continue to guide generations.”

Evolution of Sardar Patel's understanding of those 'involved' in Gandhi's assassination

By Shamsul Islam*  As the world mourns the 73rd anniversary of MK Gandhi's assassination by Hindutva terrorists on January 30, 1948, RSS, the most prominent flag-bearer of Hindutva politics, whose cadres rule India today, is found reacting angrily to the reality – that the criminals who assassinated Gandhiji were not only part of the ideological world-view of Hindu Mahasabha (led by VD Savarkar) and RSS brand of Hindu nationalism but were also connected with these. 

No Election Commission safeguard against electromagnetic hacking of EVM: Study

Counterview Desk  Releasing a new study simultaneously in Chennai and Kolkata in view of the forthcoming elections in Tamil Nadu and West Bengal, the Citizens’ Commission on Elections (CCE) – a civil society initiative – has regretted “lack of integrity of EVM voting”, pointing out, the Election Commission of India (ECI) does not appear to safeguard against the possibilities of ‘side-channel attacks’, i.e, hacking electronic devices through electromagnetic and other methods.

20% of FIRs against journalists in 2020 alone, targeted attacks in 2021 'too many to count'

Counterview Desk  Condemning what it calls “alarming rise in state repression and clampdown on news outlets and journalists” that “expose” the anti-people nature of the establishment, India's top civil society network, National Alliance of People’s Movements (NAPM) has demanded “immediate release of arrested journalists, withdrawal of arbitrary charges and protection of media persons facing threats.”

'Viability' of agricultural cooperatives vs govt proposed pro-corporate economic model

Dr Gian Singh* The farmer struggle started from Punjab against the promulgation of three agricultural ordinances by the Union government in June 2020 and the enactment of three bills by Parliament in September 2020 to replace these ordinances is unique in many respects. There is no other example of such a peaceful and democratic farmer struggle.

Whither right to food? Social security scheme allocation for woman, child 'reduced'

Counterview Desk Pointing out that women and children have been ignored in the Union Budget 2021-22, the advocacy group Right to Food Campaign (RtFC) has said that the Government of India should have taken into account the fact that even after the lockdown was lifted, distress among marginalized communities continues, with people having lower incomes and reduced food consumption.