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Centre asks State to carry out audit of ropeways

  • Category
    Polity & Governance
  • Published
    18th Apr, 2022

Context

After the Jharkhand incident of ropeway accident Ministry of Home Affairs has directed the states to prepare Standard Operation Procedures (SOPs).

Background

  • Recent Jharkhand incident has highlighted the urgent need to have detailed SOPs for ropeway service.
  • Ministry of Home Affairs has sent advisory to the Chief Secretaries of the states to prepare for detailed SOPs for ropeway services.

Analysis

Legislation available till now:

  • Aerial Ropeways Act, 2002 had been passed the government to development various ropeways in the country.
  • Apart from central legislation various states have their own legislation regarding ropeway services and maintenance.

What are the recent developments done by the government?

  • States like Uttarakhand has signed Memorandum of Understanding with Ministry of Road, Transport and Highways to build up ropeway links.
  • In the Budget 2022, Ministry of Finance has announced to develop 8 new ropeway services.
  • PARVATMALA- An efficient and safe alternate transport network: Under the Ministry of Road, Transport and Highways this scheme will be implemented in a PPP model, for various Himalayan states and North-East states.

What are the majors driving factors driving ropeway infrastructure?

  • Economical mode of transportation
  • Safer and Alternate mode of transportation in difficult hilly terrain: Ropeways are built in a straight line over the hilly terrain which can reduce the cost of land acquisition. And provide an alternate and faster mode of transportation.
  • Faster mode of transportation: Ropeway services can provide a faster mode of transportation as compared to roadways
  • Environment friendly: Low dust emissions. Material can be designed to rule out any soiling of environment.
  • Last mile connectivity

What are benefits from ropeway services?

  • Ideal for difficult and sensitive terrain.
  • Tourism sector: It can promote tourism sector in the hilly and North Eastern states.
  • A new set of economy can be generated by the development of ropeway services.
  • Transportation flexibility: Ropeways have the capacity to carry various types of materials
  • Ability to handle large slopes: It has the capacity to handle higher gradient as compared to roadways
  • Low footprint: it can be built and operated on the areas where there is higher land use is in intense competition.
  • Security and Surveillance: It can provide a faster means of transport to the armed forces in difficult terrain to handle the extremist activity and maintain peace and security at various places.
  • Better border management: even it has the capacity to manage border areas and manage security set up for external stand-offs.

What are the major challenges lie ahead?

  • Policy bottlenecks
  • Quality check procedure
  • Safety guidelines
  • Public awareness

What are steps that need to be taken?

  • Decentralized policy measures
  • Proper Standard Operating Procedures and safety measures
  • Terrain specific policy measures

Conclusion

Ropeways have the potential to serve a diversified sector for India. This can provide a safe cushion to the ongoing and upcoming economical, developmental and security challenges in various areas.

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