Other States

Odisha to start work on Shamuka project afresh

It is being dubbed as India’s largest tourism project at a single location, in coastal town of Puri.

After a gap of around four years, Odisha government on Monday announced to revive the Shamuka Beach Project, which is being dubbed as India’s largest tourism project at a single location, in coastal town of Puri.

The State government has already acquired 972 acres of land near Sipasarubali village on the outskirts of Puri to develop the area into a tourism destination of international standards.

When trees were felled for the project in 2015, the National Green Tribunal directed the government to stop felling and construction activities in ecologically sensitive areas.

Green activist Prafulla Samantara had moved NGT stating that the project was illegal as it had not got clearance as per Coastal Regulation Zone guideline and environment clearance under Environment Protection Act 1986.

At a high level meeting chaired by Chief Secretary Asit Tripathy at Lokseba Bhawan on Monday, the progress made on the project was discussed in detail.

As the land acquisition is almost complete, the Odisha Industrial Infrastructure Development Corporation (IDCO) has been asked to start construction of boundary wall around the project area immediately.

“We have already formed a company — Shamuka Tourism Development Corporation Limited — in partnership between Odisha Tourism Development Corporation and IDCO. We have also received consent from Odisha State Pollution Control Board, Coastal Regulatory Zone Authority and Puri-Konark Development Authority for the project,” said State Tourism Secretary Vishal Dev.

“In wake of fresh alteration noticed in coastal ecology, some changes were required in the master plan of the project. We have observed that sand mound have started forming near coast. Changes will be made internally without disturbing sand mounds. The new master plan will be prepared in next four months,” he said.

As per the State government, the project would be ideal for tourists looking to relax in the lap of luxury in tranquility and to experience the beautiful bio-diversity, rich culture and traditions.

It is envisaged that Shamuka Beach would be developed with establishment of star hotels, resorts, spa, exhibition complex, eco parks, Odisha Haat, museum complex, public park and residences.

Located along Bay of Bengal between Puri and Chilika Lake, Shamuka Beach is 8 kilometers from Puri, 60 kilometers from Bhubaneswar, and 35 kilometers from the world heritage monument — Konark and 45 kilometers from Chilika Lake — Asia’s largest brackish water lake. Besides, tourists coming to project area could also go to Chandrabhaga beach as well as Raghurajpur, an artisans’ village.

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Printable version | May 22, 2020 10:11:43 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/odisha-to-start-work-on-shamuka-project-afresh/article29684389.ece

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