PM Narendra Modi inaugurates water metro systems for Ayodhya and Varanasi

Anushka Khare Posted on: 2024-02-23 09:10:00 Viewer: 3,874 Comments: 0 Country: India City: Varanasi

PM Narendra Modi inaugurates water metro systems for Ayodhya and Varanasi

Varanasi, India (Urban Transport News): In a momentous occasion in Varanasi, Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated groundbreaking green waterway initiatives that mark a significant milestone in clean energy and tourism. The event showcased India's commitment to sustainable practices and responsible tourism, emphasizing the importance of cleaner fuels and eco-friendly transportation.

At the heart of this initiative are two hybrid electric catamaran vessels, MV Guh and MV Nishadraj, dedicated to the nation by PM Modi. Constructed by Cochin Shipyard Limited through the Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI) under the Ministry of Ports, Shipping, and Waterways, these vessels boast a seating capacity of 50 passengers each. Powered by fast-charging batteries, they are designed to reduce carbon emissions by an impressive 400 MT annually.

MV Guh will gracefully navigate the River Saryu in Ayodhya, while MV Nishadraj will cruise along the iconic River Ganga in Varanasi. The introduction of these state-of-the-art vessels not only symbolizes a leap towards cleaner energy but also serves to promote religious tourism in the region. Operated by the Uttar Pradesh government, these vessels represent a commitment to sustainable and efficient urban water transport.

Urban water transport is gaining momentum in India as a sustainable solution to congestion and pollution in metropolitan areas. The development of waterways and the introduction of modern vessels align with the vision of enhancing connectivity and providing eco-friendly commuting options. This move reflects the Government of India's commitment to encourage stakeholders in the maritime sector to transition to greener and cleaner fuels, as outlined in the Harit Nauka- Inland Vessels Green Transition Guidelines published on January 8, 2024.

The Harit Nauka Guidelines underscore the commitment of the Ministry of Ports, Shipping, and Waterways to transform the maritime landscape. With a focus on green vessels and the establishment of a green ecosystem, the guidelines aim to embrace low/zero emission sources of fuel, envisioning 100% green vessels in Indian waters by 2047.

In addition to the vessel inauguration, PM Modi inaugurated four community jetties in Varanasi and laid the foundation stone for 13 community jetties along National Waterway 1 (NW 1) in Varanasi and National Waterway 110 in Mathura and Prayagraj. These initiatives are part of the Jal Marg Vikas Project (JMVP), aiming to enhance the navigability of the 1390 km stretch of NW1 from Varanasi to Haldia.

The community jetties, a vital component of the JMVP, are designed to improve the socio-economic conditions of people living along the Ganga-Bhagirathi-Hooghly river system. By providing ease of access to nearby markets, they offer enhanced opportunities for trade, employment, and tourism. The projects align with the government's broader goals of promoting hinterland connectivity and fostering economic growth.

As part of the inauguration, a Quick Pontoon Opening Mechanism System (QPOMS) was introduced. This innovative system aims to reduce the time required for the manual dismantling and reassembly of kulfi pontoon bridges across NW-1. By streamlining the process, the QPOMS significantly cuts down on inconvenience and delays to both vessel and vehicular traffic, reducing the overall logistics cost and time from six hours to a mere 30 minutes.

The launch of these projects and infrastructure represents a significant step towards harnessing clean energy, promoting responsible tourism, and enhancing connectivity through waterways. The collaborative efforts between the government, stakeholders, and local communities exemplify a shared vision for a greener and more sustainable future.

As part of the Maritime India Vision, the Ministry of Ports, Shipping, and Waterways aims to boost the share of Inland Water Transport (IWT) to 5% by 2030. The Maritime Amrit Kaal Vision 2047 outlines 46 initiatives, signaling a comprehensive effort towards fostering maritime sector growth and connectivity enhancement. These initiatives, ranging from port-based agglomeration centers to fiscal incentives, demonstrate a holistic approach towards achieving a sustainable and thriving maritime ecosystem.

PM Modi's inauguration of these green waterway initiatives heralds a new era of sustainable practices, responsible tourism, and enhanced connectivity. It sets the stage for a future where India leads the way in eco-friendly transportation, making significant strides towards a greener and more prosperous nation.

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