Dhumal lays foundation stone of Kotkhai engineering institute

Shimla: Chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal announced plans for setting up a fruit technology and fruit processing college at Hamirpur even as he laid the foundation stone for a engineering institute at Kotkhai on Sunday.

Speaking on the occasion Dhumal said that the Atal Bihari Vajpayee Government Engineering and Technology Institute at Pragtinagar, being set up in association with SJVN, would start ITI and polytechnic courses for 2011 and B Tech courses for next year.

Given the large number of fruits being grown in the state, the government was considering setting up of a fruit processing college to enable value addition for the states produce, he said.

Success of the anti hail gun in Jubbal Kothkai would be used for expanding the project to other hail prone areas, said Dhumal.

Elsewhere at Pragtinagar, the chief minister also laid the foundation stone for a high voltage 140 crore power sub-station that would be established with funding from Asian Development Bank by HP Power Transmission Corp.

The sub-station would be linked with Jhakri-Abdulapur transmission line and connected with Rs 84 crore transmission lines of Hatkoti Power Station. The sub-station would help to evacuate about 500 MW of power from Sawra, Kuddu, Pabbar and Rupa valleys. The sub-station is targeted to be completed in 2 years.

A foundation stone for a Rs 5.7 crore controlled atmosphere (CA) store and upgradation of the Gumma-Baghi road was also laid by the chief minister.

Speaking about the CA store that would capacity to hold 70,000 apple boxes, Narinde Bragta, the horticulture minister on the occasion said that it would help the farmers to hold onto produce in market glut conditions.

For marketing purposes a modern yard with an investment of Rs 100 crore was coming up at Parala, said the minister.

Member parliament Virender Kashyap, who along with several leaders including, Suresh Bhardwaj, Khushi Ram Balnahta, Rakesh Verma, Bimla Kashyap among others were present, announced approving Rs 25 Lakh for a chilling plant in Jubbal and Kothkai.

Earlier, the people gave a rousing reception to the chief minister as it happened to also be his 67th birthday.

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