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Delay in Sagarmala projects due to local agitation : Sarbananda Sonowal

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NEW DELHI : The reasons for delay in implementing projects under the Sagarmala Programme is mainly due to delay in land acquisition, statutory clearances, local agitation, and change in scope, Union Minister for Ports, Shipping and Waterways Shri Sarbananda Sonowal said in response to a question in the Parliament on Friday.

The ministry’s flagship project was approved in 2015 to reduce logistics cost for EXIM and domestic trade with minimal infrastructure investment, thereby promoting port-led development in India.

Earlier this month, Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi spoke about the project as part of his vision for the Blue Economy, during Navy Day celebrations in Maharashtra.

The Minister also highlighted major steps undertaken by the government to ensure the completion of Infrastructure Projects, ranging from a periodic review of projects by various levels in the Ministry as well as methodical project appraisal and funding guidelines.

Notably, the Ministry holds Maritime States Development Council (MSDC) meetings from time to time, also encouraging coastal states and union territories to hold State Sagarmala Committee meetings for synergy among various stakeholders, the minister added.

Sonowal informed the parliament in a written response that nineteen meetings of MSDC have been held with State Governments, including those in Maharashtra – the last meeting held in August this year.

The minister also emphasised on “no delay” in release of funds under the Sagarmala Scheme, and said the ministry follows the funding guidelines for the project as well as instructions issued by the Finance Ministry for release of funds under the Central Sector Scheme.

On December 6, the second meeting of ‘Sagarmala’ state level committee was organised at the Lokseva Bhawan in Bhubaneshwar, Odisha under the chairmanship of Commerce & Transport Minister Tukuni Sahu.

Officials of the commerce and transport department, as well as other departments were present in the meeting as per reports.

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