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Orissa to construct ports despite DRDO`s objection

Notwithstanding the Defence ministry`s opposition to ports on certain parts of the coast, the Orissa government today said it had decided to go ahead with them.



Bhubaneswar: Notwithstanding the Defence
ministry`s opposition to ports on certain parts of the coast,
the Orissa government today said it had decided to go ahead
with them.

"Both defence activities and development projects
should co-exist for the overall progress of the state,"
Commerce and Transport minister Sanjib Sahu informed the
assembly.

Replying a question, the minister said that the
defence minister had earlier written to the Chief Minister
requesting him not to take up any port project on the north
side of the Dhamara in Bhadrak district.

The Defence Ministry had objected to construction of a
port at Chudamani proposed by SL Mining and Industries Limited
of the Aditya Birla Group.

Since the proposed port was close to the missile
testing centre at Wheeler Island in Bhadrak district and the
Integrated Test Range at Chandipur in Balasore district, the
Defence Research Development Organisation (DRDO) had objtected
to the project at Chudamani, they said.

The state government, however, was of the opinion
that the proposed port at Chudamani would not affect defence
activities.

"A meeting between senior officials of the defence
ministry and the state government was recently held to discuss
the matter," the minister said.

The state government, he said, had informed
representatives of the defence ministry on its decision to
continue the port project at Chudamani.

"We cannot sacrifice the state`s interest due to
objection by the DRDO. A study had ascertained that a port at
Chudamani would no way affect defence activities," said a
senior commerce department official.

Earlier, the state government had stopped work on two
other port projects, one at Inchudi and another at Chandipur,
due to objection by DRDO, the official said.

The state government had signed MoUs with five
companies to set up ports on the state`s coastline.

While the port project taken up by International Sea
Ports Private Limited was near completion, the Gopalpur Ports
Limited was working on its project.

"The work on the port project at Kirtania at the mouth
of river Subarnarekha will start after land acquisition," the
minister said.

PTI

From Zee News

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