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GS Paper I- Indian Heritage and Culture.

Maharashtra Govt Adds 18m To Shivaji Statue, To Be World’s Tallest At 210m.

Background-

  • The 210-metre-high statue of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, which the Maharashtra government plans to build in the sea off the Mumbai coast, has received environmental clearance, making it the world’s tallest statue, once built.
  • The Maharashtra Coastal Zone Management Authority (MCZMA) on 30th October, 2017 approved the government’s application to increase the height from the earlier proposed 192 metres.
  • Currently, the Spring Temple Buddha statue, which stands at 208 metres in China, is the world’s tallest statue.

 

Highlights Of The Development–

  • MCZMA officials said since other approvals are in place, the environmental clearance, too, was issued.
  • Gavai said a verbal clearance had been issued and within a few days, the state will be given a formal response too.
  • Last year (2016), chief minister Devendra Fadnavis directed the Ministry of Finance to make budgetary allocation of Rs3,600 crore for the project. However, members of the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Smarak Samiti (CSMSS), the group appointed by the state government to implement the project, said that after the height increase, the project would now cost Rs4,000 crore.
  • The equestrian statue of the warrior king has been planned on a rocky outcrop of 15.96 hectares, roughly 1.5km from Raj Bhavan, at the southern tip of Mumbai.
  • The memorial will have a temple, hospital, entrance modelled on the Raigad fort and a museum showcasing highlights of Shivaji’s life – all of which will be built in the first phase of the project, at an estimated cost of Rs2,500 crore.
  • CSMSS members told that the construction work will commence from January 2018 and is expected to be completed by 2021.
  • Mete said that in the second phase of the project, they will build a helipad and an iMAX theatre.
  • The construction of the statue has been opposed by environmentalists and the fishing community.
  • While activists said marine life will be affected by the land-filling that will have to be done to create an island from the rocky outcrop, fishermen have said the project will destroy fishing grounds, besides blocking the route taken by fishing boats.

Sources- Hindustantimes.

GS Paper II- International Relations.

AIIB Grants Rs. 13,000 Cr Loan To Andhra Pradesh.

Background

  • China-sponsored Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) on 31st October, 2017 approved USD 2 million loan (Rs. 13,000 crores) for five project in Andhra Pradesh.
  • Months ago, the state government had sent proposals to the Union Government seeking aid for five projects which includes two roads and buildings department, one each for rural safe drinking water department, municipal and urban development department and Panchayat Raj department.

 

Highlights Of The Development-

  • The Union Government had recommended those proposals to Asia Infra and Investment Bank for further help and clearance.
  • The bank is willing to grant the loan, which led to the meeting on the 31st. The bank team held elaborate discussion about the proposed projects, said Dinesh Kumar, AP’s Chief Secretary.
  • In this connection, AIIB bank team of technical representatives headed by Dr D. J. Pandiyan, Vice President and Chief Investment Officer met AP’s Chief Secretary Dinesh Kumar at state secretariat.
  • AIIB senior investment operations specialist Hari Bhaskar, senior social development specialist Somnath Bash, senior procurement specialist Giocomo Ottolini, consultant Yitzhak Kammi, state municipal and urban development secretary Karikala Vallavan, state finance secretary M Ravichandra and others attended the meeting.

Sources- Business-Standard.

GS Paper III- Security.

Vice Admiral Karambir Singh Takes Charge As The Flag Officer Commanding-In-Chief (FOC-In-C) Of The Eastern Naval Command (ENC).

Background

  • Vice Admiral Karambir Singh on 31st October, 2017 assumed command as the Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief (FOC-in-C) of the Eastern Naval Command (ENC) at a ceremonial parade held at the naval base.
  • Singh inspected the Ceremonial Guard and reviewed platoons of naval personnel drawn from various ships and establishments as he assumed command of the ENC.
  • Singh succeeds Vice Admiral HCS Bisht, who retired from the naval service on the same day after completing forty years of his illustrious career.

 

Highlights Of The Development-

  • Bisht was accorded a farewell by the ENC by the traditional ‘Pulling Out’ ceremony, wherein he was ceremonially pulled out in a jeep by Flag Officers and Commanding Officers of Ships and Naval establishments, to resounding ‘Teen Jais’ from the men to the outgoing commander-in-chief.
  • Commissioned into the Indian Navy in July 1980, Vice Admiral Karambir is an alumnus of the National Defence Academy, Khadakwasla. The admiral earned his wings as a helicopter pilot in 1982 and has flown extensively on the Chetak and Kamov helicopters.
  • He is a graduate of Defence Services Staff College, Wellington; College of Naval Warfare, Mumbai and has served as Directing Staff in both these Institutions.
  • In his career spanning over 37 years, the Admiral has commanded an Indian Coast Guard Ship Chandbibi, Missile Corvette INS Vijaydurg as well as two Guided Missile Destroyers INS Rana and INS Delhi.
  • He has also served as the Fleet Operations Officer of the Western Fleet. Ashore, the Admiral has served at Naval Headquarters as the Joint Director Naval Air Staff, and as Captain Air and Officer-in-Charge of the Naval Air Station at Mumbai. He has also served a member of the Aircrew Instrument Rating and Categorisation Board (AIRCATS).
  • On promotion to flag rank, the Admiral was appointed as Chief of Staff, ENC. His other important flag appointments include Chief of Staff of the Tri-Services Unified Command at Andaman and Nicobar Islands and as the Flag Officer Commanding Maharashtra and Gujarat Naval Area (FOMAG).
  • In the rank of Vice Admiral, he has been the Director General Project Seabird, in-charge of infrastructure development of the Navy’s modern base at Karwar.
  • He was also assigned higher responsibilities at IHQ MoD (Navy) as Deputy Chief of Naval Staff and Vice Chief of the Naval Staff, prior to the present appointment.
  • The Admiral is a recipient of the Ati Vishisht Seva Medal (AVSM) awarded by the President of India.

Sources- Business-Standard.