The Union home minister Rajnath Singh said that the Union Territory of Diu is on the way to soon emerge among the league of Smart Cities. Addressing a function after inaugurating and laying foundation of various development projects in Diu on April 21, Rajnath Singh said the tiny Union Territory was selected for the Smart Cities Project during the final phase of bidding and is today on the verge of realising this dream. A total of Rs 1,400 crores would be spent under this project, of which Rs 701 crores would be the contribution of the government.
Some of the important projects to be undertaken under the scheme consists construction of a continuous coastal promenade connecting Ghogla-Jalandhar-Chadrika Mata beach up to Chakratirth beach, establishment of an Integrated Command and Control Centre for strengthening security and improving traffic management in Diu and sea plane service between Daman and Diu to improve connectivity.
Some other projects would be taken up under PPP mode and/ or through other government schemes under the Smart Cities programme.
Singh said that unprecedented development has taken place in Diu during the last four years. Fund allocation has jumped 50 per cent in four years from Rs 103 crores in 2013-14 to Rs 150 crores in 2017-18. He pointed out that the Central government is responsible for the development of Union Territories and has completed several development projects during the last four years. Enumerating some of them, Singh highlighted establishment of solar power projects of combined capacity of 9 MW which made Diu a power surplus district. Further, there is a proposal to set up windmill power project. He announced that as part of developing a new education hub, three educational institutions, – Diu College, Polytechnic College and a Food Craft Institute – will begin academic sessions from 2018-19. He also expressed confidence that the construction of a four-lane highway connecting Somnath and Diu will be completed soon, which will give a fillip to the tourism sector in the region.
He added that for the benefit of a large number of fishermen living in Diu, the length of jetties has been increased by 500 metres and a parking harbour of 175 metres in length and 85 metres wide was also built in Vanakbara village.
During the visit, Singh also laid the foundation for the construction of a pile jetty in Vanakbara village at a cost of Rs 3.77 crores, building of an Annexe Circuit House and establishment of first phase of sewerage network, including a common sewage treatment plant, in Diu.