Dholera airport has opened the floodgates of private sector participation in India’s first smart city.
The smart city has been planned by the apex body as one that shall be built six times the size of Shanghai and is also targeted at being developed as a global trading and manufacturing hub. Its unique feature and admirable vision makes it a place most lucrative for worldwide investors. Though accelerated private sector participation was expected in the region, the airport paved way for the same and was an imperative project to enable easy access to the city.
The facility is being built as a world class international airport augmented with best in class infrastructure. Located about 20 kilometers from the smart city and 80 kilometers from Ahmedabad, Dholera Airport shall not only cater to the air passengers of the aforementioned two cities but also serve the neighboring areas including Rajkot, Bhavnagar, Vadodara, Anand, Kheda and many more.
This is the second international airport in the state of Gujarat, the first one being Ahmedabad. Ahmedabad airport is however facing challenges off late in accommodating the ever increasing air passengers. As per statistics, the Ahmedabad airport shall reach its saturation point and Dholera Airport shall become the best alternative to passengers travelling from nearby regions.
Apart from the airport project, attention is being paid to ensure that the city is well connected through other transit modes. Provision for sufficient public transportation is a key requirement of Dholera and the residential areas are allocated accordingly in the master plan of the smart city. Since the city shall be an important economic place for carrying out trading and manufacturing activities, provisions are also being made to ensure easy movement of raw materials and finished goods in and out of Dholera. The Dedicated Freight Corridor is playing an important role in supporting the city in this mission.
Dholera city is being looked upon as a leading example for sustainable development and providing for better living standards. Many efforts are being taken in this direction through usage of ICT and access to basic amenities such as public transportation, water supply, 24*7 electricity, wastage recycling plant, provision of open areas and parks and top notch education and healthcare facilities. Vast stretches of land has been allocated for construction of residential housing townships within and in the outskirts of the city. They are crucial for accommodating the population outburst that the city shall be witness to in the next few decades. Commercial and industrial projects shall also be developed likewise.
While Dholera Airport shall augment funding through parallel resources other than government funding, other important projects are also being approved in the region for superior and faster growth of the smart city.
Bonalu (2013) – 147
Image by Rajesh_India
The colourful annual procession of Bonalu Festival in the Old city of Hyderabad.
Origin of Bonalu festival
Bonalu is an important festival celebrated in Hyderabad and Secunderabad in Andhra Pradesh in the month of Ashada (July – August). Bonalu means ‘food’ and is a ritual in honor of Mother Goddess – Mahankali. The ritual consists of an offering of food made to the Goddess by women which is later shared by the family and friends as ‘prasad.’ The festival is a month long affair and includes colorful processions and community feasts.
Bonalu on Sundays in the Ashada month: The first main festival is held on the first Sunday of the Ashada month at the Sri Jagadamba temple in Golconda Fort, the next main festival on the second Sunday at the Ujjain Mahankali Temple in Secunderabad and the third main festival on the third Sunday at the Matheswari Temple of Laldarwaja. The rituals are also performed in all the other Mother Goddess temples in the twin cities.
© Rajesh Pamnani 2013
© Rajesh Pamnani 2013