Prize for railway official or outsider! Any railway official or outsider who helps in averting rail accidents is being suitably awarded by the Zonal Railways. In 2008-09, 907 such persons were awarded. During the current fiscal up to October, 479 such people were awarded. The information was given by the minister of state for railways K H Muniyappa in a written reply in Lok Sabha on Thursday.
Friday, December 04, 2009
INSURGENCY was at peak in trouble-torn North Eastern state of Nagaland in late 1980s. A government rule dictated unmarried woman IAS officers to abandon Nagaland, forcing young S Aparna, a 1988 batch IAS officer to unwillingly leave that cadre and chose Gujarat instead. Twenty years down the line she has remained single, but for the people of the port city of Surat, she has become a change-agent crafting happier lives for thousands of families living in the diamond city. Surat's municipal commissioner Aparna along with the city's Mayor got a rare distinction when Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh gave away the best JNNURM city award to Surat in a function held in New Delhi on Thursday. (See picture here) For Aparna, who hails from Tamil Nadu, it was the result of relentless effort to make a meaningful change in the city's infrastructure from drain water system to construction of roads and flyovers in addition to making a smart balance sheet for the city, and putting in place a good financial mechanism. An M Phil in zoology and MBA from an Australian university, Aparna wants to experiment with Surat's raising of resources through capital market by issuing bond even though there is no pressing need for the cash-rich city to raise any money now. Though she suffered a minor setback over her reported comment on North Indians living in the city a few months ago, she is recognised as one of the most efficient officers the state is banking upon. She feels the job of a municipal commissioner is masculine in nature though she is enjoying every bit of the tough assignment. After all, the only other known woman city commissioner is 1994 batch Orissa cadre IAS officer Aparajita Sarangi who had a very successful innings as Bhubaneswar municipal commissioner from May 2006 to July 2009. For Aparna, what matters after Surat being selected as the best among 63 mission cities in the country is the happiness of every Surti. "There is a lot of euphoria in the city!" she exclaims. Mayor of Ahmedabad Kanaji Thakore and municipal commissioner I P Gautam also recieved a prize as Ahmedabad was adjusted the best city for Mass Transit Project BRTS. Greater Mumbai received the best mega city award, DMRC got the best environment friendly transit system award. Best basic services for urban poor city award was given to Vishakhapatnam. Surat also bagged most inclusive approach award, and best mission city award in earmarking of development land for poor was received by Chandigarh.