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75,000 acres acquired for mega city near Ahmedabad

Last updated on: June 13, 2011 18:38 IST

75,000 acres acquired for mega city near Ahmedabad

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At a time when farmers are agitating against land acquisition in different states, 75,000 acres of land has been acquired at Dholera, 110 km south of Ahmedabad, for one of the biggest urban development projects in the world.

Spread over 940 square km, a new city would be developed at Dholera by the Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor Development Corporation (DMICDC) as a part of its $90 billion project spread across six states.

In all, the DMICDC, a public-private-partnership venture, has acquired 80,000 acres, its chief executive and managing director Amitabh Kant said on Monday at a Ficci function in New Delhi.

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"Dholera would be one of the biggest urban development projects in the world today," Kant said.

The DMICDC is implementing the $90-billion project spread across Delhi, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Gujarat.

The project involves building industrial and commercial infrastructure along the Delhi-Mumbai dedicated freight corridor which is also underway with the help of the Japanese government.

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The DMICDC project also involves development of new cities along the route.

Seeking foreign investment in the DMICDC project, he said it is ideally suited for the global investors, as they do not have to run for land acquisition and environment clearances.

"In India, we invite investors . . . we say go and take environmental clearance and land. It takes five years to do all this and even then after this investor keeps running into problem. Classic (case ) is Posco," Kant said.

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He said such problems would not be faced by investors in DMICDC projects.

India aims at increasing share of the manufacturing sector in the gross domestic product to 25 per cent by 2025 from 15 per cent at present.

Besides acquiring land for cities, the corporation has taken environmental clearance for six gas-based power projects to augment power supply in industrial hubs and cities.

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"We are developing six power projects so that in these cities there is no shortage of power," Kant said.

It has also completed the master plans of new cities to be developed in Haryana (Manesar-Bawal Investment Region) and UP (Dadri-Noida-Ghaziabad Investment Region).

Navi Mumbai covers 345 sq km. In comparison, the size of the Dholera city that the Gujarat Industrial Development Board plans to build with private participation will be all of 360 sq km.

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Photographs: Reuters
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New cities and sub-cities will be developed around the industrial nodes of Kushkhera-Bhiwadi-Neemrana in Rajasthan, Dadri-Noida-Ghaziabad in Uttar Pradesh, Bharuch-Dahej in Gujarat, Igatpuri-Nashik-Sinnar in Maharashtra and Pitampura-Dhar-Mhow in Madhya Pradesh.

Later, 17 more cities are planned to be developed on a similar pattern.

The money from the Centre would be both in the form of debt and equity which would be ploughed into the Delhi Mumbai Industrial Corridor Development Corporation Limited, which is a joint venture between the government, IL&FS and IDFC.


Photographs: Reuters
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