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Old December 31st, 2011, 08:12 PM   #21
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Wish You all a Very Very Happy and Blessed New year..God Bless!!
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Old January 3rd, 2012, 04:52 PM   #22
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10th Pune international film fest from Jan 12

Pune, Jan 2: Over 200 films from more than 40 countries will be screened at the 10th Pune International Film Festival (PIFF) that will be held in the city from January 12-19.

The country’s focus at this edition of PIFF is on Germany. To commemorate 75 years of Indo-German relations, 47 films from Germany will be shown including films made by Werner Herzog and Wim Wenders. The highlight will be Pina, a film by Wim Wenders in 3D.

The ‘Retrospectives’ category will showcase films of the famous Japanese director Ozu and Taiwanese director Hsiao-Hsien Hou. Other categories include ‘Indian Cinema Today’ and ‘Marathi Cinema Today’ while documentaries on famous people made by the Films Division, and select movies on members of the film fraternity, who died during the past year, will also be screened.

Highlights during the week-long fest include presentation of the Lifetime Achievement and the SD Burman Award for creative music and sound, selection of best international (World), Marathi and international Marathi film, lectures, discussions and exhibitions on various film-related topics, and competitions under various sections.

Organised jointly by the Pune Film Foundation and the Government of Maharashtra, the films will be shown at ten screens across the city at six venues namely CityPride (Kothrud), R-Deccan (Deccan Gymkhana), CityPride Abhiruchi, E-Square, Inox and NFAI auditorium.
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Old January 7th, 2012, 04:28 PM   #23
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PCMC bans use of plastic in civic gardens

PUNE: The Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) has banned the use of plastic in the 150 municipal gardens since January 1.

Suresh Salunke, chief of the garden department, PCMC, said, "The civic garden department has started implementing the ban from the beginning of the new year on the directives of the municipal commissioner. Deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar said last week at a public meeting in Nigdi that the civic body should not allow citizens to take plastic items into the gardens, which would help in maintaining the beauty of the gardens. As a result a plastic ban has been enforced in the gardens."

Municipal commissioner Ashish Sharma's directive states that the officials of the civic garden department, namely, the garden superintendent, garden inspector, assistant garden inspector, horticulture supervisor, assistant horticulture supervisor, and the security department have been granted powers to implement the ban.

The security guards have to check the citizens at the entrance of the gardens to ensure that no plastic or non-biodegradable items are carried inside.

Salunke added, "In the first phase, the garden department will undertake an awareness drive for a fortnight at the municipal gardens. Later, it will start charging fines of Rs 100 from people who are found possessing items made of plastic or other non-biodegradable materials in the gardens."

The Pimpri Chinchwad municipal corporation recently clamped a ban on plastic bags with thickness below 50 microns.


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Old January 10th, 2012, 05:19 PM   #24
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Pune to host Compute 2012

Pune will host Compute 2012 and the annual event of Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) India between January 23 and January 25.

To be inaugurated at YASHADA, the administrative training institute of the Government of Maharashtra, by Dr Vijay Bhatkar on January 23, Compute 2012 will focus on high performance computing and knowledge and information retrieval.

The speakers include Dr Aditya Abhyankar, HOD at Department of Technology, Pune University; Dr Pushpak Bhattacharyya, Professor of Computer Science and Engineering at IITB; Dr Deepak Khemani, professor at IIT Mandi; Dr Abhay Jere of Persistent Systems Ltd; and Dr Girish Palshikar of Tata Research Design and Development Centre.

The ACM India annual event will be held on January 25 at Inter-University Centre for astronomy AND Astrophysics (IUCAA). Mr Narayana Murthy, Chairman Emeritus, Infosys, will deliver the keynote address while Dr Narendra Jadhav, member of Planning Commission, will give the capstone talk.

Prof Frans Kaashoek of MIT, US, and 2010 ACM-Infosys Award Winner; Mr Ramesh Mengawade, CEO of Opus Software; Mr Ravi Kannan, principal researcher at Microsoft Research; Ms Dame Wendy Hall, professor at University of Southampton and former ACM President, are amongst the prominent speakers.

Over 500 delegates from software companies, academics and research institutes all over India are expected to attend the conference, as also Mr Alain Chesnais, President of ACM, Mr John White, the Chief Executive Officer, and Mr Pat Ryan, the Chief Operating Officer.

One of the highlights of Compute 2012 is the Technology Showcase Pavilion at which start-ups from Pune will showcase their capabilities, Dr Anand Deshpande, MD and CEO of Persistent Systems, and co-chairman of ACM India, said. The technology showcase and evening session (5 p.m. onwards) will be open to the public.

Established in 1947, ACM is the world's largest educational and scientific computing society for the computer science/IT community and has over one lakh members. Its award, the Turing Award, is comparable to the Nobel Prize in computing. ACM India Council was formed in 2009 and has over 4500 members. The Pune chapter was formed last year

http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/...cle2790362.ece
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Old January 12th, 2012, 04:43 PM   #25
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Pune to host first Science Film Festival

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The National Film Archive of India (NFAI) and Vishwa Scientific will organise the city’s first Science Film festival from January 20 to January 22 at the NFAI auditorium, to spread awareness about science among the masses.

Speaking about the first-ever such festival, co-ordinator of the festival, Mayuresh Prabhune said, “The film medium is the most attractive and effective to reach out to the masses. The graphics and visuals are easier to connect and help understand the
subject better.”

Nearly 20 films made by research centres and amateurs from India and abroad on scientific subjects will be screened during the festival.

Prabhune said that though the films this year have been contributed by research centres and amateurs only, the festival will inspire more contributions from next year.

Apart from screening of films, the festival will also include lectures from eminent personalities working in this field. “We have arranged lectures by Medha Khole, director of India Meteorological Department; Arvind Natu, Hemant Ghate and other eminent personalities,” Prabhune said.

The week-long event will also include sky-watching shows in Kothrud, Hadapsar, Aundh, Sadashiv Peth and Sinhagad Road, from January 17 to 21. On January 23, field visits to institutes like IMD and the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research will be conducted.

“We have approached city schools and colleges and are expecting around 20,000 people to participate,” he said. The event is open to all.
http://www.dnaindia.com/mumbai/repor...stival_1636555
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Old January 13th, 2012, 10:33 AM   #26
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A property in a prime under-construction project in Kharadi was sold for a total value of Rs 90 lakh. This lavish three-bedroom unit spreads across 1,800 sq.ft and is accompanied by covered parking space for two four-wheelers. Located in one of Pune’s prime residential location, the project is expected to provide the residents an entire gamut of services, including the standard clubhouse and gymnasium etc. The location of Kharadi commands capital values in the range of Rs 6,000-7,000. However, due to the fact that the property is located in an underconstruction project and it is at least 18-20 months away from completion, the values are lower than that of ready-to-move in projects.
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Old January 13th, 2012, 10:35 AM   #27
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As many as 20 residential projects will come up in Pune and Pimpri- Chinchwad areas developed on Green Buildings Concept under GRIHA (Green Rating for Integrated Habitat Assessment), said Dr. R.K. Pachauri, director-general, The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI).
He was speaking at a seminar organized by CREDAI Pune on the science of climate change, the impacts of continued greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions & mitigation technologies from the perspective of green buildings.
CREDAI-National has entered in to a MoU with GRIHA for wide campaigning on the Green Building Concept amongst the Member Developer throughout India.
Dr Pachauri added, “GRIHA” is India’s national rating system for sustainable habitats designed and developed by the MNRE (Ministry of New and Renewable Energy), Government of India, in collaboration with TERI. At present, under ‘GRIHA’ 160 projects, both residential and commercial, are going on nationally, out of which 20 projects are in Pune.”
Adding further, Pachauri mentioned that within a year’s time, TERI would prepare a detailed report on their research on effect of climate change on Maharashtra, and the report will be presented to Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan.
“It will also include various measures to stem global warming. Along with Maharashtra we are also working on the report of Gujarat, West Bengal, Rajasthan & Himachal Pradesh,” he said.
“To comply with Green building concept it is important for a project to utilize minimum water, install a solar system for saving at least 30 per cent electricity, treatment & re-usage of waste water, planting as many saplings/ trees. While contributing to India’s growth through this sector, one should not ignore the environment,” said Pachauri.
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Old January 20th, 2012, 07:25 PM   #28
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In last decade, population of Pune urban agglomeration grew 34%

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PUNE: From just over six lakh in 1951 to 50 lakh now, the population of Pune's urban agglomeration puts it alongside Chennai, Bangalore, Hyderabad and Ahmedabad. The three metros of Mumbai, Delhi and Kolkata have a population of over one crore.

In the last decade, the population grew by 34.28 %, but the highest decadal growth (51.73%) was between 1971 and 1981, while the lowest (29.93 %) was between 1951 and 1961.

An urban agglomeration (UA) is the continuous urban spread constituting a town and its adjoining outgrowths, or two or more physically contiguous towns together with or without outgrowths. Pune's urban agglomeration includes the city as well as neighbouring Pimpri Chinchwad and the city's fringe areas which are in the municipal limits.

The union ministry of urban development which recently put out the provisional population figures of cities and towns, has given Pune (UA) population at 50,49,968. Of these, over 26.59 lakh are men, and over 23.9 lakh are women. Pune ranks fifth behind Chennai, Bangalore, Hyderabad and Ahmedabad.

However, high concentration of population in select urban agglomerates, is not a good sign of development, say experts. On the contrary, decentralizing the growth of population in a few cities would allow other cities to grow, they added.

High growth in population in certain cities brings with it an imbalance and increased disparities in urban development. Urban growth is inevitable, according to social experts. Many perceive it as a stepping stone to prosperity boosting economic growth, but it can also lead to poverty, unemployment, lack of proper housing and sanitation.

With better implementation of policies, a good and balanced picture of growth of all cities can emerge, population studies' expert from the Gokhale Institute of Politics and Economics Sanjeevani Mulay said. Three cities in Maharashtra -- Pune, Thane and Nashik-- are growing, she added.

"The population increase is not due to natural growth, but due to the migration of people in large numbers. Pune has good job opportunities, the IT sector has grown here and there are several multinational companies. It is well-connected to Mumbai, the weather is good and various resources are easily available here," Mulay said.

In Maharashtra, besides Pune, Nagpur, Nashik and Aurangabad are urban agglomerates. Mulay said though Nagpur and Aurangabad have good infrastructure, not much growth in population is seen. They need industrial growth to boost better employment opportunities. .

National census figures reflect three metros-Delhi , Greater Mumbai and Kolkata-with a population of over one crore with the highest population in Greater Mumbai, the National Capital Region coming second, followed by Kolkata.The population of Pune district is 94,26,959. There are 57,39,716 urbanites (60.89 %) including Pune and other small towns.

Industrial growth in information technology and the coming of multinational companies has attracted talent here which is one reason for the growth in population, said Anant Sardeshmukh, executive director-general of the Mahratta Chamber of Commerce Industries and Agriculture ( MCCIA).

Such expansion had generated better employment opportunities which has been supported by civic infrastructure and the culture of the city. "One can look at industrial growth in Chakan and other developments that have taken place in that area," he said.

However, faster implementation of civic infrastructure projects to support the growth of the city agglomeration was necessary. The formation of Pune Metropolitan Regional Development Authority has been pending for several years now. We should get started on this. The city needs to have a development plan. Much time is being wasted on planning projects. We need a metro rail, airport and an international industrial exhibition centre which will not just benefit the city, but also western Maharashtra."
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/c...w/11560008.cms
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Old January 24th, 2012, 06:43 PM   #29
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Gardens galore

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Though the number of gardens in the city has crossed the 100-mark in last five years, many of them are plagued by lack of maintenance and security. Although political parties talk of more innovative gardens, they do not have much to say about what efforts will be made to address these issues.


According to the garden department of the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC), there are 111 gardens in the city. Of these, 15 to 20 gardens were inaugurated in the last two months, obviously inspired by the upcoming civic polls.


The PMC budget for 2011-12 allotted Rs26 crore for the gardens and includes maintenance. However, the department was unable to provide details of the expenditure when contacted.


The city also has variety where gardens are concerned. Projects initiated in the last five years include a butterfly garden in Sahakarnagar and a Mughal garden on Sinhagad Road. On the cards are theme parks like a palm park at Yerawada and a blind garden at Koregaon Park. The latter project is based on a garden for the visually handicapped in Bremen, Germany.


Political parties are talking about more gardens on various themes. But there is no word about what would be done to ensure they are looked after. Many existing gardens are in a neglected state. The gardens meant for families are being avoided by people because of the nuisance caused by couples and drunkards. The gardens also suffer from poor maintenance. The see-saws, swings and slides in many gardens are out of use. Recreation and meditation centres are not active.


The garden department claims they have posted security personnel at all gardens.


The Sarasbaug garden is a favourite with many children. Amol Jojare, who often takes his three-year-old daughter to the garden said, “Many times, I see liquor bottles lying around in the garden. The indecent behaviour of couples is a reason that I have to avoid going to some parts of the garden with my daughter. Besides, the tank should be cleaned more frequently as it stinks badly. Do the political parties have this on their agendas?”


The Sarasbaug Ganpati temple trust said there is only one security guard for the garden.


The Model Colony lake garden and the Sharad Pawar garden in Kondhwa Khurd are other instances of lack of attention. The PMC people concentrate on keeping the plants green. They have not considered the security of the birds and amphibians in the water body, according to members of the Model Colony Youth Club.


The Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) has promised to develop more facilities in the gardens like toilets, drinking water and first aid, but does not say anything about security. However they feel that setting up a committee that includes local people for each garden may help to address the issue.
http://www.dnaindia.com/mumbai/repor...upkeep_1641613
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Old January 25th, 2012, 06:23 PM   #30
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The garden department has really opened scores of small gardens all over the city in the last 5-10 years. They have really done a remarkable job. There are many gardens near slums and they are impeccably maintained. There is absolutely no littering at all. It shows that if something good is made, people appreciate and co-operate.
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Old January 26th, 2012, 06:39 PM   #31
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Climate service centre for world Met office to be set up in city

PUNE: The India Meteorological Department's office in the city will get four major projects, totally worth Rs 350 crore, in the next five years, said A K Tyagi, director general of meteorology, here on Wednesday.

Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the IMD's 137th Foundation Day function, Tyagi said the projects include a Climate Service Centre (CSC), which will serve as nodal agency for the World Meteorological Office's south Asia region for providing medium- and long-range forecasts on climate behaviour and variabilities.

A Centre of Excellence (CoE) in agriculture meteorology; a south Asian centre for testing and calibration of meteorological instruments and an all India training centre for operational meteorological plans at IMD's existing facility at Pashan are the other projects, he said.

A data centre for digitisation of vital records dating back to 100 years, is also being established, he added.

"The IMD will recruit close to 450 scientific assistants over the next one year and has taken up with the ministry, the issue of filling up of 70 vacancies at the officer's level posts through the UPSC," he said.

Recently, Union minister for earth sciences Ashwani Kumar identified climate services as the next big responsibility awaiting the IMD's attention. The services deal with long-term behaviour, beyond 10-15 days and reaching up to season or year, of climate and its impact on various users of IMD's forecasting services.

Decadal and century scale changes are also of interest to the society but only for technology and adaptation issues. Climate data and impact of climate variability on agriculture, water resources, human, animal and plant health etc need to be studied. Tyagi said, "The CSC, which will be established at a cost of Rs 70-odd crore, will have four major components, viz. 1) climate monitoring, which refers to behaviour of climate vis-a-vis variabilities and climate change; 2) climate diagnostic, which will focus on why a particular behaviour pattern occurs; 3) climate prediction and 4) climate application and user interface."

"Pune will also get a substantial share of nearly Rs 50 crore from the Rs 220 crore agri-met project that aims at connecting with the service users like agriculture departments at various states across the country," he said.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/c...w/11635097.cms
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Old February 21st, 2012, 04:06 PM   #32
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Projects for Pune this year: Zero

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This year, the annual budget for Pune might not have announcements of new projects for public work.

This is because the new general body and the standing committee would be convening only after March 15, while the municipal commissioner would be presenting the budget of accounts next week before the outgoing general body.

The tax increases proposed by the commissioner mostly is shot down by the standing committee whose budget highlights many projects. The Rs3,000- crore budget for 2011-12 had earmarked almost 35% for projects, which included the Indira Gandhi Medical College.

However, this year no new projects would be there in the budget, said, corporator Ujjwal Keskar. “This year, the budget would be the budget of accounts, which would seek the sanction of the general body for the salaries and other establishment expenses of the civic body. In January, the commissioner had proposed hike in property tax, which was shot down by the standing committee,” he said.

The establishment expenses for the year 2011-12 was earmarked at Rs1,385 crore. Other than salaries of civic employees, it includes electricity bills, water tax, petrol allowance, ward level work, etc. Almost 22% of the budget is spent on the salaries of the employees.

The present House would be dissolved in March 14 and the new house will come into existence from March 15.

After the election of the new mayor, the standing committee would be elected in due course of time. Post this, the new chairman might constitute a new budget for this year or would present a budget for the next financial year, 2013-14.

As per the Bombay Provincial Municipal Act (BPMC, 1949), the budget for the civic body is prepared by the municipal commissioner, which is then sent to the standing committee. The chairman of the standing committee then deliberates about it and then presents the budget before the general body which passes the budget.

Ulka Kalaskar, chief accountant of the Pune Municipal Corporation, said that municipal commissioner, Mahesh Pathak, would be presenting the budget for 2012-13 before the existing general body next week.

“As per the BPMC, Act, the standing committee and the general body has to pass the budget before March 31. In case the budget is not passed, the commissioner’s budget comes to force till the standing committee comes up with its own budget,” she said.
http://www.dnaindia.com/mumbai/repor...r-zero_1652443
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Old February 24th, 2012, 04:45 PM   #33
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Pimpri-Chinchwad: Regional business growing at 15% per annum; realty and auto sectors zoom

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PUNE/CHINCHWAD: The twin towns of Pimpri-Chinchwad have long held the reputation of being a prominent industrial region in Maharashtra. What has now caught everyone's attention is the rapid growth the area is registering. A number of international brands - especially from automobile and auto component sectors - are making a beeline to set up their production units here.

The region is registering 15 percent growth annually, according to government officials. At present, the region has more than 4,000 industrial units, including small and medium-scale enterprises (SMEs) as well as multinational companies (MNCs) such as Tata Motors, Kinetic Engineering, Force Motors, Bajaj Auto, Thermax, Forbes Marshall etc. IT majors - such as Infosys, Wipro, IBM India, KPIT Cummins etc. - also set up their bases here with the establishment of the Rajiv Gandhi Infotech Park in Hinjewadi.

"We expect industrialisation to pick up pace in the next five to 10 years, as existing companies and vendors are likely to expand their operations, while new vendors too will come into the area," said Anant Sardeshmukh, director general of the Mahratta Chamber of Commerce Industries and Agriculture (MCCIA).

"Automobiles and auto ancillaries units remain the key sectors here. Simultaneously, engineering, pharma companies and IT firms in the region too will expand in the coming years," he said adding that the region would be creating a lakh jobs every two years or so.

To promote business activity the government has initiated work on mega projects - such as the International Exhibition and Convention Centre coming up in Moshi and the proposed New Pune International Airport in the region - which will catapult Pimpri-Chinchwad as an industrial hub of national and international importance in near future.

REALTY BOOMING

The Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) has been credited with executing the planned growth and herald real estate boom in the region. "Pimpri-Chinchwad has many strategic advantages attracting several industries along with residential projects. It is centrally located in relation to Pune, Mumbai as well as other industrial zones such as Chakan and Talegoan Dabhade. Also, with the upcoming airport close to the twin-towns, the area is set to see more growth," said Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Commissioner Asheesh Sharma.

The commissioner added that the correct implementation of the developmental plan has been the key to ensure a balanced growth in the region, with attention paid to industry, housing and environment. The corporation has also been upgrading infrastructural facilities by providing wider roads and gardens as per the reservations in the development plan, while MIDC is supplying water to the industrial zone.

"Since the town has been completely planned as per requirements ten years from now it will be an ideal place to work and reside," the commissioner of the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corp said. MIDC officials were not available for comment due to civic elections underway in the twin-town on February 16.


PEOPLE AND PROSPECTS

Pimpri-Chinchwad's future looks strong owing to its proximity to major cities such as Pune, Mumbai and Nashik to name a few. The Mumbai-Pune Road, Pune-Nashik Highway (NH 50) and the roads connecting Pune are vital transport routes. In addition to road transport, "The proposed New Pune International Airport will certainly give boost to industrial growth in the region," said Mr Sardeshmukh of Mahratta Chamber of Commerce.

"Besides, the state government plans to invest in improving existing roads and is also initiating six-laning of the Pune-Nashik Highway to ensure better traffic management," he added further. The Pune International Exhibition and Convention Centre coming up in Moshi is expected to be a huge attraction for international auto brands as well as other business houses. The centre will be constructed as part of the 240-acre development plan for Moshi with an investment of Rs 600 crore. It will have a convention centre surrounded by seven exhibition halls, two 28-storeyed commercial towers, hotels, retail stores, leisure spaces and a golf course. The first phase of this centre is expected to be completed by 2012-end with an investment of Rs 150 crore.

POWER DRIVE

The twin-towns are poised to become a centre for industrial activity in the state, thanks to modern professional governance in association with industry partners and public participation.

The catalyst for growth has been government agencies - Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) and Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation - in cooperation with the industrial body Mahratta Chamber of Commerce Industries and Agriculture (MCCIA).

The joint collaboration of government and industry players executed major developmental plans in the last decade driving the economy of the region to up to Rs 25 lakh crore, according to government data. With many more developmental plans in the pipeline, the region is catching the attention of many.


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http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/...72.cms?curpg=2
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Old February 26th, 2012, 11:36 PM   #34
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Pune Industries rock. TN should learn from Maha.
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Old February 27th, 2012, 12:17 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by cncity View Post

Pune is reeling under severe urban civic issues,blue collar jobs have created great infra chaos in its sister city pimpri like mass housing etc.

Please get the Metro approved fast some tier two cities like Kochi and Jaipur are getting metros.

Pune needs to establish itself as the second R&D hub of India.Pune right now needs more R&D labs.
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Old February 27th, 2012, 03:49 PM   #36
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Pune surely needs the metro very soon. With population crossing 5 million and more industries coming up in the industrial belt, there will be a huge population requiring cheap transportation to the north/western parts of the city where most of the industries are concentrated.

There's also quite a few R&D firms open in Pune already mainly for auto related industries

With 112 MNC R&D centres, Pune seeks to be innovation hub of Asia

.
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Old February 27th, 2012, 03:52 PM   #37
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Pune has potential to be hub for food processing, food scientists’ meet told

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Pune is a hub for food processing given its location and character of population, which is majorly an earning population. Also, there are different initiatives being taken up in Pune. These include the Government of Maharashtra's approved Rs 100 crore project for horticulture development, upcoming mega food parks, vegetable clusters set up by the ministry of agriculture, Wine Board, Deccan Sugar Technologists Association, NABARD (National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development) and NAFARI (National Agriculture and Food Analysis and Research Institute) and MCCIA (The Mahratta Chamber of Commerce Industries and Agriculture).

This was stated by Pradeep Chordia of Chordia Food Products in an AFSTI (Association of Food Scientists and Technologists [India]) event held recently.

“In fact, NAFARI and MCCIA were the first few organisations to recognise agriculture as business),” said Chordia who will be sending a proposal to the ministry of food processing industries for setting up a mega food park.

Not only this, Pune is situated in almost the centre of the country. This allows it to have accessibility to distribution points like ports. “Take the JNPT, which is just 50-60 km away from the city and provides easy doors for import/export trade,” Chordia said.

He said that if a man spent Rs 5 a day for value-added food then the total potential for Maharashtra would be around Rs 20,000 crore. That would require an investment of Rs 500 crore and would create around 20 lakh jobs for the state.

Given the fresh fruits and vegetables market in the vicinity, Chordia said a sophisticated and advanced cold chain industries taking care of this sector was needed. He, however, did not explain how a regular supply of electricity would be made available for the cold chain industry given the irregular power supply in the city.
http://www.fnbnews.com/article/detne...85&sectionid=1
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Old February 27th, 2012, 03:55 PM   #38
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Rose business blooming in Pune-Talegaon

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PUNE/TALEGOAN: While love was in the air during Valentine's Day, the flower growers of Talegaon Dabhade and neighbouring areas did a whooping business worth Rs 15 crore. Talegaon and Maval region, near the industrial hub of Pimpri-Chinchwad, did whooping business worth Rs 10 crore in the international market and Rs 5 crore in the domestic market.



Shivaji Bhegde, president of Pune District Flower Growers Association informed that due to good climate this year, around 1 crore roses were produced, fetching excellent business for flower growers in the region. Elaborating further, the president said, "Contracts for exporting roses were signed between international companies from the United Kingdom (UK) and Holland and flower growers in the first week of December itself. The Dutch rose variety was in great demand and the process of exporting roses normally begins near Republic Day and ends by February 8 - 9, after which the remaining roses are used domestically."

"Demand for Indian roses is on the rise in global markets. India's annual floriculture export is more than Rs 300 crore, of which fresh cut flowers account for 30 percent. Sale during this season is around 30 to 35 percent of the total annual sale of fresh cut flowers," informed Mr Bhegde.

In order to grow large number of flowers and meet the huge demand of roses during the season of love, floriculturists adopt the technique of flushing adjustment, which allows the grower to stop production a few months before Valentine's Day and flush it during the season. Thus, they can control the number of stems harvested on a given day. Apart from this, excellent storage facilities increase the shelf life of roses from 10 to 16 days.

SEASON OF ROSY RETURNS

"Normally, we sell roses at Rs 4 to 5 per stem in the local market. But, this year we were offered a higher selling price than usual," said Mr Bhegde. He credited the higher offer of price in the domestic market to the increasing popularity of Valentine's Day in India. "I have exported around 60 percent of my total produce to the UK and Holland," he added. A single rose as such with a good stem can fetch around Rs 17 to 18 per stalk, as the price depends on the colour and the length of the stem.

Mr Bhegde owns 60 acres of land, of which 15 acres have a poly-house especially for red roses, for the last 10 years. He has made an investment of around Rs 9 crore till date. Using the flushing adjustment techniques, Mr Bhegde produced around 4 - 4.5 lakh red roses, making a business of around Rs 55 lakh with a profit margin of around 35 percent.

"The investment in land, building the poly-house, along with post harvesting hall, packing, grading, cold storage facilities and transport is a one time activity," said Mr Bhegde.

"After this initial one time investment, one only needs to invest on equipments, fertilisers, pesticides and packing material apart from the daily wages of the employees," he added.

The president labeled getting local workforce as a major challenge. "Very few people are interested in the agriculture sector. As plots are fetching huge prices, most of the farmers have sold their land to enjoy a comfortable lifestyle.


Hence, we have to get labourers from Uttar Pradesh(UP), Chhattisgarh and Bihar. I have provided them with residential facility and jobs to their family," said Mr Bhegde, who has 120 daily wage labourers working for him at around Rs 120-140 per day. Another rose grower from Nigade village near Talegaon - Vinay Sambare informed that this year was definitely a golden opportunity for the growers.

Mr Sambare has been in the business for the past six years and has a rose poly-house on 4 acres of land. This year, his poly-house produced around 1.5 lakh stems; of which 50 percent were exported to UK and the remaining were sent to New Delhi, Indore and Mumbai.

According to Mr Sambare, crisp weather and civic elections boosted the rose business. "Since the elections were due, there was less violence and florists did a good business who otherwise bear the brunt of anti-Valentine's Day protests in the region. Society has become more liberal and has started to accept this day of celebrating love. This is also a reflection of the economic state of the customers who are spending with an open heart on roses," he said.

Though Mr Sambare did not opt for the flushing technique used by others, he however generated revenue of Rs 15 lakh during the season of love. "The trend of decorating houses with flowers is much prevalent in foreign countries as greenery is hardly visible due to extreme cold and concrete everywhere as compared to India. Also, all the roses exported should have a shelf life of a week after. The acceptance criteria is very stringent and flower growers need to take utmost care," informed Mr Sambare.
Rose business blooming in Pune-Talegaon
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Old March 4th, 2012, 01:00 AM   #39
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Pune squad dog finishes 1st in drug detection test

A member of Pune police dog squad Jay, who specialises in detection of narcotics and drugs has won the first prize at the National Police Duty Meet that concluded in Nashik on February 26. Jay was part of the three member team along with Maxi and Lucky.

The five-year-old male canine was recruited in Pune police in July 2007 when it was two months old. His caretakers, constables VJ Mane and PD Garje had trained him in narcotics detection for nine months in 2008. Since then Jay is part of the Pune police crime branch team.

Satish Devre, inspector with Pune police’s anti-narcotics cell said, “Jay is part of every operation that we carry out. Jay had cracked a very difficult case from Mumdhwa in 2010. We had information that a large amount of marijuana was kept in a bungalow. Jay had given us the exact location of the contraband.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/pu...n-test/919395/
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Old March 4th, 2012, 01:02 AM   #40
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Ruby Hall bags award for best medical tourism facility in country

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Ruby Hall Clinic was awarded for the best medical tourism facility in the country. President Pratibha Patil handed over the award, conferred by the Ministry of Tourism,Government of India, on February 29 at Vigyan Bhavan, New Delhi.

Bomi Bhote, Chief Executive Officer, Ruby Hall Clinic, said, “This is a proud moment for Ruby Hall Clinic and Pune.” There were more than 50 top hospitals in competition from all over India. "We are the first hospital to perform complex Cardiac Surgeries in Lagos, Nigeria, having done more than 50 bone marrow transplants, over 100 kidney transplants and 100 cardiac surgeries on foreign patients at Ruby Hall Clinic," said Bhote.

In spite of many odds like geographical disadvantage, being a Tier-II city, lack of full fledged international airport and being a standalone institute, we have still been able to attract more than 600 foreign patients for treatment during the last year. Patients from UK, Iraq, Iran, Oman, Bahrain, Nigeria, Kenya and Ethiopia availed our services.

The medical tourism department was started in 2009 with facilities like video conferencing, airport pickup and drop, air ambulance, interpreter services, visa assistance, currency exchange, free Internet, mobile/ SIM card, sight-seeing, country specific special food and diet provided to patients. Tourism Minister, Government of India, Subodh Kant Sahai, presided over the function.
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/ru...ountry/919397/
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