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Maharashtra to launch Project Monitoring Group

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The Maharashtra government has decided to set up a monitoring group to expedite clearances of industrial projects

Maharashtra_MapMumbai: Against the backdrop of a rout in the Lok Sabha elections and with an eye on the forthcoming Assembly polls, the Maharashtra government has decided to set up a monitoring group to expedite clearances of industrial projects.

The government is likely to launch a PMG (project monitoring group) portal next week that will facilitate faster clearances of industrial projects through web to ensure more transparency and time-bound action.

“In view of the success of the PMG at the Centre, there was a demand from the industry to lower the threshold limit. Accordingly, the Centre is now assisting states, including Maharashtra, to set up their own portals for smaller projects,” the Central PMG chairman Anil Swarup informed.

Swarup said that project-related clearances will be monitored through a web portal and he would soon be coming to the city to launch it.

A specialised project monitoring group (PMG) had been set up last year during the previous UPA government to accelerate pending industrial projects worth up to Rs 1,000 crore as the stalled projects touched a whopping Rs 21 trillion under its watch.

Maharashtra will be the eighth state to set up a project monitoring group after Odisha, Uttarakhand, Kerala, Chhattisgarh, Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand and Karnataka.

The Prithviraj Chavan government has come under criticism from industry players as well as political parties for delay in clearances for projects which they claimed was impacting the growth of the state.

Though the government has been taking steps to ensure single-window clearances, due to various levels of approvals required, projects have been delayed.

Swarup said that at the central level, in all 438 projects have been accepted for consideration so far which entail an investment of around Rs 21 trillion.

“So far the central PMG has facilitated clearance of 155 projects that entail an investment of more than Rs 5 trillion crore,” he said.

As in the case of the Central portal, any industry that has a project in the investment range between Rs 100 and Rs 1,000 crore, can register itself on the portal and indicate the issues it has with the central or state ministries.

Once accepted for consideration, the issues relating to the state departments will automatically flow to the designated officers of the respective departments and those relating to the centre will go to the Central PMG. These issues will be resolved through sub-group meetings.

Industry experts however believe that it will be important to see how empowered the group will be in taking decision on granting clearances.

“A PMG is certainly needed. But it will be important to see how empowered the group is while taking any decisions. Certain projects not only require state approvals but also at municipal levels. Also it will be important to see whether it will be able to keep up with the deadlines,” PwC executive director for infrastructure advisory Manish Agarwal said.


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