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Inland waterways bill to be passed in current session of Parliament: Gadkari

 Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari said that the Centre has submitted a bill in the Parliament to convert 101 important rivers to inland waterways and hopefully it would be passed in the current session.
The 10-member Mohandas Pai Committee formed by the government for carrying out technology initiatives for roads, highways and ports sectors would submit its preliminary report within one month’s time, Mr Gadkari said at an Assocham event held in New Delhi.
“We have assigned Mohandas Pai the work to see how e-governance mechanism can lead to good governance in both our departments and what will be the e-solutions and e-recommendations for the same,” said Mr Gadkari. “He is studying on NHAI, our new corporation for north-east, Ministry for Surface Transport, Shipping and Ports and to make our work more effective, the preliminary report should be out in a month’s time and we will implement it as per that.”
He also said that the government is making efforts to increase draft depth to 20 meters by utilising newer technologies as it will help in promoting economic viability at ports.
The Minister also stressed on the need to design ships with greater tonnage that can be handled at ports with lower draft as well and promoting use of LNG based engines to bring down the pollution levels at India’s ports.
He also said that the private sector should take ports and shipping sector seriously. “There is much more economic viability, profit, internal rate of return and capital cost is much less in inland waterways and shipping and the industry should take this sector seriously,” he adds.

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