Sea Bird naval project phase-2 to be completed by 2017-18

Sea Bird naval project phase-2 to be completed by 2017-18

Defence Minister A K Antony on Saturday said the Phase-II of Sea Bird naval project, to be completed by 2017-18, would have ultra modern facilities for berthing at least 30 warships at Karwar in Karnataka.

The Centre also has a plan to take up another expansion to ensure that Karwar naval base can handle 50 major warships, he said, after inaugurating an integrated defence-civilian township.

Karwar would not only decongest the over-crowded Mumbai harbour but also provide India with much-needed strategic depth and operational flexibility on the western seaboard, Antony said.

The Centre had already paid Rs 127 crore compensation to those displaced by the project, he said, adding the government awaited the Supreme Court verdict on a petition filed by Naval authorities challenging Karnataka High Court order directing it to pay Rs 1,500 as compensation per gunta of land (one gunta is 1/40th of an acre) acquired for the project.

The Defence Minister said once the apex court verdict was pronounced, the second phase of the project would commence. On Netrani Island being used by the Naval base though it was declared as bio-diversity heritage site by the state, Antony said the Naval base will ensure that environmental concerns were addressed.

Responding to a plea by District In-charge Minister Vishweshwar Hegde Kageri that local youth be provided employment opportunities, Antony said over 1,500 ITI personnel have been recruited for providing technical training to the locals who had been affected by Sea Bird naval project.

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