Assam Government To Sanction Rs 108 Crores For Transforming ‘Batadrava Than’ Into Cultural, Tourist Destination; Check-Out Key Cabinet Decisions 

Posted in Assam, Featured, Northeast


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The Assam Cabinet has approved the “Development of Batadrava Than as Cultural and Tourist Destination (Phase-II)” project at an estimated cost of Rs 108.33 Crores. This endeavour seeks to transform the Than into a must-visit tourist destination and showcase the life of Srimanta Sankardeva and the rich culture of Assam.

This project will also include Krishna Leela comprising a 5m tall Krishna statue, a Naat Ghar and Kalakendra (auditorium) with 600 capacity alongwith performance stages, two Jalpanghars, Namghar and a Yatri Nivas.

Its worthy to note that Srimanta Sankardev was born at Alipukhuri, which is why Batadrawa is a major pilgrimage site for Assamese neo-Vaishnavites. For many years, the Assam government had neglected its maintenance.

This decision has been undertaken during a cabinet meeting convened by the Assam Chief Minister – Himanta Biswa Sarma on Saturday at Tezpur.

Besides, the state cabinet has also decided to establish ‘Freedom Movement Park’ at Jorhat Jail – a tribute towards the freedom warriors, with an estimated cost of Rs 134.91 crores spanning in an area of 66 acres.

According to an official bulletin, some of the project features include – converting part of the main jail complex into a museum with the adjacent green areas to be re-designated as memorial. Memorial stones with inscriptions of valour synchronized with light and sound ambience. Preservation of ancestral house of renowned poet – Late Hiren Bhattacharjee. Redeveloping remaining area into an urban park. Shifting and reconstruction of accommodation for central and open jail staff. Existing DIG office will be redeveloped as custom designed office facility for the DIG and the current building to be used as freedom fighters’ museum.

In line with the objectives of Project Sadbhavana, 1037 applications pending since 1992 to be settled in favour of indigenous landless families on a mission mode.

Besides, the state cabinet has also approved the construction of a 2.4 kms bridge over Subansiri river for Rs 383.67 crores at Lakhimpur’s Ghunasuti, with an intent to connect Lakhimpur town with Bebejia. It is expected to benefit the people of Lakhimpur, Dhemaji and Majuli by shortening the distance between Lakhimpur and Dhakuakhana by about 20 kms.

It has also approved the construction of a 890 metre bridge over Pagladiya river for Rs 247.90 crores, facilitating direct connectivity between Kumarikata and Nayabasti, and upto Baksa District headquarters in Mushalpur. The work includes widening of 9.9 kms road connecting Kumarikata to Nayabasti.

This new road will provide an alternative route to the existing NH between Barpeta and Rangiya. It will also provide a direct route for commercial vehicles to Samdrup Jongkhar (Bhutan border) from Pathsala, Barpeta and Bongaigaon.

Besides, approval has been accorded for setting-up of Alaboi Ron Smriti Khetra in Kamrup at an estimated cost of Rs 150 crores to honour Lachit Borphukan and supreme sacrifice of 10,000 Ahom soldiers in the Battle of Alaboi. The total built-up area is 12,085.50 sq kms in 130.20 bighas land.

The war memorial will be in the form of a hengdang (sword) with a height of 150 ft, rising from the midst of a reflective pool. A grand museum with galleries showcasing martial artefacts and relics of the Ahom kingdom apart from terracotta figurines representing Ahom soldiers.

A state-of-the-art public auditorium of 5000 capacity will also be constructed at Khanapara in Guwahati at an estimated cost of Rs 15 crores. This auditorium will be constructed in a 40-bighas land under the Animal Husbandry & Veterinary Services Department.

Besides, this auditorium will be equipped with modern audio-visual system and IT infrastructure, lounges, breakout spaces, green room, other backstage facilities, large green lawns, space for open banquets, independent 6-floor multi-level car parking block to accommodate 600 vehicles, etc.

It has also decided to ink a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with NLC India Ltd, a Navratna enterprise to set-up a Joint Venture Company (JVC) for generating 1 GW plus solar power on Government land. This will be the first such initiative among PSUs in energy sector.

Moreover, the implementation of Revamped Distribution Sector Scheme (RDSS) with Rs 8,727 crores as project cost and state share of Rs 263 crores. Under RDSS, around 57.45 lakh Smart Prepaid Meters will be installed along with Smart Metering at 2782 Feeders and 77547 Distribution Transformers for energy accounting.

Installation of 4,902 Distribution Transformers in High Voltage Distribution System among other measures for loss reduction and system modernization.

Assam Urban Infrastructure Development and Finance Corporation Ltd will be formed to ensure smooth continuation of development, financing and implementation of Urban Infrastructure Projects.

However, the state cabinet has also decided to hike the funding for Mission Chariali Flyover construction from Rs 270 crores to Rs 474 crores. It has also approved Rs 4.5 crores for redevelopment of historic Baan Theatre. Rs 15 crores will be released to Water Resources Department for dredging & beautifying Mora Bharali.

It has also decided to sanction Rs 16 crores for developing and promoting Borpukhuri as a tourist spot. 70 bighas land has been allocated for shifting Tezpur Central Jail from current location to Chariduar; and developing current Tezpur Central Jail campus over 64-bigha land as 1000 capacity auditorium.

Besides, special measure will be undertaken for preservation and development of ‘Poki’ ancestral home of Rupkonwar Jyoti Prasad Agarwala.

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