PM orders special cell to fast-track 40 stuck projects by July

With projects having Rs 7 lakh crore bank funding stuck for various reasons, PM has directed setting up of special group to fast-track them and its expected to clear 40 such projects by next month.

Updated: Jun 13, 2013, 18:07 PM IST

New Delhi: With projects having Rs 7 lakh crore bank funding stuck for various reasons, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has directed the setting up of a special group to fast-track them and it is expected to clear up to 40 such projects by next month.
Singh issued the direction for setting up the Project Monitoring Group within the Cabinet Secretariat at a meeting that discussed the status of 215 investment projects which are stuck because of lack of various clearances and other factors.

"The Prime Minister directed that a special cell be created immediately in the Cabinet Secretariat. This Cell would be in the nature of a Project Monitoring Group for all large projects, both public and private and would pro-actively pursue them so that these investment projects are commissioned on time," Prime Minister`s Office said in a statement.

Talking about this, Finance Minister P Chidambaram today said the Cell will fast-track all the stalled projects.

"The approach will be to get some early harvest. We will identify 20-30-40 projects that are nearing COD (commencement operation date)," he said at a press conference.

He said the push will be given to these projects, "what we call low hanging fruits" among 215 projects, so that they can quickly take off the ground.

"We will push that in the remaining month of June and I am sure by July, we will tell you which are the projects we pushed," he said.

At the meeting chaired by the Prime Minister earlier this month, Chidambaram had said his Ministry has compiled a list of about 215 such projects, where the banks have already funded more than Rs 7 lakh crore.

The Finance Minister highlighted time and cost overruns being faced by these projects, as well as the action required to remove the implementation bottlenecks.

"Suitable officers may be identified at the earliest and priority projects may be quickly identified to be taken for tracking," the statement said.