PIYUSH GOYAL – Powering India by transforming challenge to opportunity. ‘Acche Din’ For Coal & Electricity Sector Are Finally Here !
When the Narendra Modi government took over in 2014, the power ministry inherited a ill managed, corrupt, red tape ridden & controversial past. All the issues related to power including coal production, discom, electricity tariffs & allocation of resources were struck due to one bottle neck or the other. Piyush Goyal was faced with the toughest of challenges and aced in it.
Struggling to clock a 4% growth rate, Coal India Limited which produces 80% of domestic coal consumption was reeling under tremendous pressure due to the ever widening supply demand gap. Mr Piyush Goyal had a clear vision and determination to set things right. He had realized the supply demand gap and the import strain cannot be reduced without speeding up transparent allocation of resources & involving the private sector. This vision enabled breaking the state monopoly in commercial mining of coal besides transparent auctioning has resulted in a potential earning of Rs 3.35 Lakh crores. It doesn’t end there, Coal India Limited has produced 32 MT in last fiscal which is projected to be way more than the 46 MT produced in the previous 4 years. For the first time in 20 years, there was no shortage of coal which has resulted in valuable forex savings. In the light of this short and swift recovery of the power sector, Mr Piyush Goyal well deservedly won the Business Reformer of the year award by Economic Times.
Task master and visionary
Piyush Goyal is known to sit with the bureaucrats while legislating laws, there was a instance where it was reported Mr Piyush Goyal had spent three sleepless nights along with bureaucrats while drafting a specific power sector legislation. He is widely known for extensive consultation by bringing together all stake holders to bring about a long term solution than short term fixes. Like in the case of state power discoms which is plagued by massive debt causing strain to the Banking sector also, a scenario which has persisted for long. Mr Piyush Goyal’s consultative approach has resulted in state government’s falling in line to kick start reform and also has delighted the Banking sector as the suggested reform structure is progressive. If implemented with purpose, it is widely expected that state discom’s will soon come out of the red and run their business in a sustainable way.
We commend Mr Piyush Goyal’s work, leadership and vision. We hope the dynamism and competence of Mr Piyush Goyal will inspire and drive other lawmakers on the path of excellence. We also would like to thank Mr Narendra Modi for putting his faith on Mr Piyush Goyal to revive an ailing power sector.
Have you ever spotted a speeding car without a care for the traffic signal? Ever spotted a person rushing to the other side of the road when the traffic light is green? Ever seen bikers use pavements as roads to save a few minutes? Ever seen cars change lanes on highways or rush hour traffic on a whim? Well, so have thousands of other Indians.
Road safety in India is a serious concern. For a country that boasts the second largest road network in the world, it is inarguable that we need to pay more attention to our safety on roads – a place where we step out every day, spend a handsome amount of our time.
The government has come up with several regulations on road safety, but is this enough? Not if awareness around the topic is still lacking.
The intention behind the initiative is to bring together lawmakers, local authorities, traffic police and citizens under one umbrella.
The cities will be rated on parameters such as Pedestrian Rights, Road Lighting and Maintenance, Motor Laws and Traffic Control, Emergency Services, Road Cleanliness, Connectivity, Road Transport Infrastructure, Heavy Vehicle Traffic Management, Road Safety, Differently abled friendly, Road Quality and Road Safety For Children.
Here are the ten cities that were chosen for Road Safety Index 2018 and the reasons that make their roads safe or unsafe:
Mumbai has facilities for the differently-abled like reservations in public transports, special train compartments, concessions on fares, etc. The city that never sleeps scored the best when it comes to citizens’ participation in making the city accepting and warm toward the differently-abled. It won the category ‘Differently-Abled Friendly’.
However, there are areas of improvement – illegal hawkers, pavements and footpaths need to be fixed or reconstructed.
Anyone who hails from the capital of West Bengal knows about its recreational parks and brightly lit streets. Its traffic police deserve special mention for redirecting rush traffic every day as Kolkata roads are narrow and many are one-way streets.
During Durga Puja, the city tries to make Pandals differently-abled friendly by installing ramps.
It won the categories – ‘Road Lighting & Maintenance’ and ‘Road Safety For Children’.
But the City of Joy needs to work more on giving its residents #HappyRoads. Issues of waterlogging and numerous street hawkers, roadside vendors in busy areas need to be solved.
There’s no one who’s been to Delhi and not praised its excellent connectivity. Delhi prides itself for broad roads, top-notch metros, pavements and foot over bridges. The national capital surely serves as an example for cities across India when it comes to road connectivity hence, it won the categories ‘Connectivity’ and ‘Road Quality’ in the Road Safety Index.
While Delhi has made many of its public places differently-abled friendly, the areas that need improvement are long hours in traffic, fixing of roads that pose a hindrance to daily commute and rash driving by bikers.
The city boasts well-marked zebra crossings, adequate footpaths for pedestrians, underground SMART dustbins, reduced encroachments. Raipur fares well in almost all parameters of road safety. It won the category of ‘Road Safety’ and ‘Pedestrian Rights’.
However, the city could do better with stricter fines for traffic violators and awareness about road safety and garbage disposal.
Other cities can take inspiration from Chennai on how to ensure good road safety. The city has wide, well-connected roads that are lit properly. It also boasts rigorous night patrolling where traffic rules violators are fined. One of the best initiatives taken by Chennai is the separate parking space on city roads that prevent traffic from accumulating. It came out on top in the category ‘Motor Laws & Traffic Control’.
Areas where Chennai needs to improve are street lighting and cleanliness.
Indore is one of the few cities that has used plastic waste for construction of roads and covered garbage disposals, which explains why the city won the ‘Road Cleanliness’ category. Indore also has adequate zebra crossings, visual signals, street lights, footpaths.
But areas where the city needs improvement are – strict action against traffic violators, public spaces more differently-abled friendly.
There is a lot to learn from the road safety measures implemented by Ahmedabad – sound medical facilities, separate lanes for local buses, special cab service for differently-abled, wide roads. Ahmedabad won in the category ‘Emergency Services’, ‘Road Transport Infrastructure’ and ‘Heavy Vehicle Traffic Management’.
If the Heritage City improves road safety awareness among citizens, it’s bound to fare even better. Better street lighting and lesser encroachments will work in favour of Ahmedabad.
The other cities shortlisted were Pune, Bangalore and Hyderabad but they didn’t win any category.
Maruti Suzuki’s initiative to rank cities will encourage citizens and administration to do better and emerge on top.
The Logical Indian community wholeheartedly appreciates the various initiatives undertaken by Maruti-Suzuki in this direction. Not only the government but we, as citizens of this country, should also pledge to make our roads safe. One of the first steps towards this is that we understand our duties.
We hope the authorities take a note while we pledge to do our own bit towards happier, safer Indian roads.
For more information about the Maruti Suzuki’s initiative and the Road Safety Indexclick here.