Kashmir Indepth

Lt. Governor for continually improving Yatra facilities in sync with futuristic requirements

Reviews implementation of Bhawan Master Plan, other upcoming projects

JAMMU, DECEMBER 5: The 65th meeting of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board (SMVDSB) was held at the Raj Bhavan here today under the chairmanship of the Lieutenant Governor, Girish Chandra Murmu, Chairman of the Shrine Board.

The meeting was attended by all Board Members of SMVDSB – H. H. Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, Dr. Ashok Bhan, Sh. K. B. Kachru, Sh. K. K. Sharma,  Justice (Retd) Permod Kohli, Maj. Gen. (Retd) Shiv Kumar Sharma and Sh. Vijay Dhar ; Sh. BVR Subrahmanyam, Chief Secretary; Sh. Bipul Pathak, Principal Secretary to the Lieutenant Governor; Sh. Simrandeep Singh, outgoing Chief Executive Officer of the Shrine Board; Sh. Ramesh Kumar, CEO-designate of the Board; Sh. Vivek Verma, Additional Chief Executive Officer; and Sh. M. M. Gupta, Chief Engineer of the Board.

The Lt. Governor, while welcoming the Members of the Board, complimented the former Chairman, Sh. Satya Pal Malik and earlier Board Members and lauded their commitment and valuable contributions in creating and continually upgrading facilities for convenience of the pilgrims.

The Lt. Governor directed the CEO to ensure that all the projects be completed as per the envisaged timelines for largely facilitating the pilgrims.

The Board reviewed the Yatra statistics of the year and discussed various measures which may be taken to further increase the number of pilgrims visiting the Shrine. While reviewing various pilgrim-centric infrastructural facilities put in place by the Board, the Chairman emphasised the need for ensuring that the yatris are provided increasingly best possible arrangements in sync with the emerging requirements. A brief appraisal of the University, Hospital, Nursing College, Gurukul and Sports Complex was also given in the meeting.

The meeting reviewed the present status of the installation of CCTV Surveillance System on the entire track from Darshani Deodi to Bhawan which will be implemented on turnkey basis. Once in place, this system will not only help in monitoring the movement of the pilgrims and strengthening overall security measures, it will also be of immense support in case of any emergent situations to provide real time assistance to Shrine and local administration.

The Board also reviewed the status of the implementation of the Bhawan Master Plan which involves construction of the mega Durga Bhawan for accommodating nearly 4000 pilgrims at Bhawan area, Inlet Queue management system at Bhawan, Exit Track at Bhawan, and Queue Management system at Bhairon Ji. The estimated cost of the implementation of the first phase of Bhawan Master Plan is likely to be Rs. 90 crore.

The Board also reviewed the status of the underground cabling project, from Katra to Bhawan and the surrounding areas, which already stands allotted to M/s. JSP, a Ghaziabad based company by the PDD of J&K Government. The meeting was apprised that the work has begun on the project from Tarakote Marg, and it will take 24 months for the work to be completed. Estimated to cost Rs. 78 crore, the project will be partly funded under the PMDP and partly by the Shrine Board. This high utility project will have SCADA compliance based monitoring system of the electric network.

The meeting reviewed the implementation of the Annual Green Plan of the Board for the current year and also approved the Annual Green Plan for the year 2020-21.

In several significant decisions towards employee welfare, the Board ratified the reduction of Term employment period from 7 to 3 years. It also endorsed a Higher Pay Scale scheme for in-situ promotions for Board employees. The Board also accepted the recommendations of the Personnel Matters Committee regarding the much awaited re-structuring of several cadres intended at reducing stagnation in several cadres. To begin with, the General, the Sanitation, the Medical/Nursing, and the Catering cadres have been approved for restructuring. The Board also announced setting up of Employees Welfare Fund which entails initial contribution towards the corpus from the Shrine Board and thereafter regular contributions from all employees every month.

Earlier, Sh. Simrandeep Singh gave a detailed presentation on the present status of varied activities of the Shrine Board and the action taken as regards the implementation of various decisions of the previous meetings of the Board.

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