Progressive Bihar - Finally the sleeping giant is waking up

Progressive Bihar - Finally the sleeping giant is waking up
Progressive Bihar - Come support it's growth path.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Bihar on the verge or eradicating Polio.

In the last 15 months (i.e. September 2010 to December 2011), no cases of polio has been reported in Bihar which is a good sign that more and more people are getting  better health facilities. There are still about 0.5% kids who are not getting covered by the Pulse polio program and the health department is planning more focus to cover all these children too.
A good achievement.

More details can be found in the Times of India article  Bihar inches closer to polio eradication

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Advances in Bihar

The Right to Services Act (RTPS Act) in Bihar has now gone online. The state government launched the online services which will allow citizens of Bihar to avail various services online. For example
  1. Ration Card
  2. Driving License
  3. Scholarships
  4. Social security pension
  5. Caste, residential and salary certificates
  6. Land registration papers,
  7. Mutation papers
  8. Transport papers
  9. Character certificates.
It is a good move in the right direction. Besides Bihar has become the first state in the country to put into place a well-laid arrangement using its own specially made software for providing timely public services. Bihar RTPS Act covers 10 departments covering 50 services.
More details can be read in Public services in state can now be availed online - The Times of India

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Interesting end to seized firearms in Bihar

In probably a first that I have heard of, the Bihar police will melt hundreds of firearms seized from various criminals and make farming and gardening tools out of them. Interesting phenomenon: Don't know if this is more cost effective than normal means of production of farming and gardening tools, but atleast it will reduce the amount of firearms in circulation , even if by a fractional percentage.

But I have to say, people in Bihar are getting more creative by the day.

Details about the news can be found in the Gulf News article Bihar to melt seized firearms to make farm implements


Wednesday, October 5, 2011

70% rural Biharis do not get 3 square meals a day.

We all have known that Bihar has the highest poverty in India. However the statistics will shock most of us. Seventy percent of rural families in Bihar do not have 3 square meals a day (breakfast, lunch and dinner) and have often slept on empty stomach at night. The below statistics is from a survey results published on IBNlive. These statistics are the hunger levels amongst the poor people in India.
State
Hunger Level
Uttar Pradesh
7%
Orissa
9%
Andhra Pradesh 16%
Jharkhand
26%
Rajasthan
36%
Bihar
70%
Out of the people surveyed in Bihar, many said that they had not eaten pulses, fruits, eggs or meat in several weeks. The state government and the central government should be focusing on this area on a war footing, only then will any change happen to the situation of the poor people in Bihar.
While the reference article from IBNlive provides details of the abject poverty in Bihar for everyone to know, another source of information had provided a similar feedback to me less than 2 months ago. One of my friends narrated a real life scenario from his recent experience. He had gone to his village to visit his grandparents and while he was there someone came knocking at the door. This person, who was from the same village, did not have anything to feed his children and hence had come asking for help. My friend started talking to him and realized that this family has not had pulses (daal) in over 3 months: My friend was deeply moved by this and gave him a few kilos of daal, rice , etc so that the family would not sleep hungry atleast for the next few days. I was also moved by this and so would all of you; except that many in the government are not moved by it or just turn a blind eye to it.
At one time daal was called the chicken of poor people. This is what my grandfather had told me when I was a child and it got registered in me. But the fact that today a poor man cannot even afford to feed his kids daal in over 3 months time, is a very shameful thing for all of us.  The state government, the central government and all of us have to really stand up and think: is this the India our forefathers fought for? Why has successive government failed to notice this in Bihar. Do we ever want the likes of the earlier CMs to ever come back ruling over Bihar. Atleast the current government is making efforts to change things. But why is the central government not willing to go that extra mile?

Why is the central government hesitating to accord a special status and therefore provide special support to the people in Bihar. Isn’t the parameters on poverty good enough for the central government to stand up and take note.
I would like to ask Dr. Manmohan Singh (our Prime Minister), whom I respect a lot, that isn’t this data on poverty and state of people in Bihar not a good enough justification to rise above the politiconomics and do something which will improve the lives of people of Bihar ; which will be something done for Humanity. Why can’t the task of bringing up the downtrodden be taken up without politicizing it. Why can’t Dr. Manmohan Singh take a bold decision and say that “I will help the people of Bihar and do whatever required to improve their life be it according special status or providing special focus”

Source of data – IBN live article  70 pc of rural families are hungry in Bihar - India News - IBNLive
Prashant
http://progressivebihar.blogspot.com

Friday, September 30, 2011

Nitish Kumar Government's Report Card for 2011

As with the last few years, Nitish Kumar will come out with a report card on November 27th on the performance of the Bihar government in the last one year after it assumed office for the 2nd term.

It will be interesting to read the report card this year to understand whats changed. There was a lot of meat in the first 2 report cards which common people like  you and me could relate too like improvements in health statistics, etc and so it will be worth the wait to see what the government tables in the report this year.

Some expectations is that the report will focus on the government anti - corruption statistics and will play strongly on the cases like the conversion of a siezed property into a school, etc. It will be worth the while to wait and see the report on the success of anticorruption activities. I remember reading a Times of India article in 2005 which summarized that Bihar was the most corrupt state in India followed by Bihar. I want to see if there is a change in these statistics. I want to see more officials become honest and leaving corruption behind. This will ultimately benefit all Biharis.

But beyond anti-corruption and successes around it, I would really like to see what has been achieved in the areas of agriculture, services and industrialization and what is the plan to accelerate the developments in these areas. Hoping for some renewed rounds of fireworks in the first year of the 2nd innings of Mr. Nitish Kumar at the helm. After all many of us believed and have put faith in Nitish Kumarji's leadership.

Floods in Bihar - What is the solution

Year on Year we keep hearing that Bihar is either suffering from Drought or from floods. More often than not, some part of Bihar goes through a drought situation , while other areas experience floods and that too at the same time. In all situations it is the people who suffer, it is the people who die.

This year again floods came calling: Read The Times of India article from 26th August 2011 - Floods hit thousands in Bihar, UP.  Or the more recent articles Floods in 6 Bihar districts still grim, govt sounds red alert and Flood situation worsens in Bihar.

And then I read an article on BRF (Bihar Revival Forum) that has been trying to garner support for a Canal proposal that will not only ease the flood problems of the people affected by the floods , but at the same time help in improving agriculture in other drought affected areas of Bihar (Read: BRF moots simple plan to check flood in north Bihar). Not only that, as per the plan put together by the BRF, the same water in the canal can be used for generating hydroelectric power. They have reached out to many people for support like ex-President A P J Abdul Kalam, AICC general secretary Rahul Gandhi and senior BJP leader L K Advani but have not been very successful.

This prompted me to read more about the flood situation in Bihar and the findings are mind-boggling:
  1. 76% population of North Bihar remains in recurring threat of floods
  2. 16.5% of India's total flood affected area is in Bihar
  3. 22.1% of the flood affected people in India stay in Bihar
  4. 73.06% of the total area of Bihar is flood affected
I knew that floods were a major problem but just realized the magnitude after really doing the research. So the question that comes to my mind is "Why haven't successive state of central government done anything about the flood situation in Bihar?"

The number of people affected by floods is the highest in Bihar,  Poverty is the highest in Bihar: I would think this to be a no brainer - Do something to reduce the floods, channelize the water to other drought affected areas and use it as a multipronged tool for the prosperity and well being of the people of Bihar. This will not only ease the problems of the people affected by floods, it will also help them and the people from the other areas who will benefit from channelized flood water for irrigation, prosper. Bihar is an agricultural economy with 70% of the people or more engaged in agriculture and therefore I would think that building a canal should have been taken at the highest priority... . After all one of key reasons for Punjab and Punjabis in Punjab to prosper is that they put in a canal system in place and that led to a green revolution of sorts in Punjab.

The estimated spend by BRF for their proposal has been pegged at Rs. 600 crores by them but the Bihar government estimated it more like Rs. 6000 crores. I would guess Rs. 600 crores mooted by BRF would be the cost of labor and material for building the canal and not included the estimates for land acquisition, project management, government approvals or not factored in some other costs. But either ways looks like the cost will be anywhere from Rs. 600 crores to Rs. 6000 crores.

The canal should be built even if it means spending Rs. 6000 crores or even Rs. 10,000 crores.This amount is way smaller than the amounts that some ministers and government officials are supposed to have made in the recent time in scams like 2G etc. And afterall it will help give a better life to the people of Bihar which will also benefit people across India. With better life in Bihar, there will be lesser people who will migrate out in search of a job or better living conditions and therefore it will reduce the kind of backlashes like the one the Bihari people faced at the hands of the likes of Raj Thackeray's MNS.

So what is the government waiting for? Industries are still not coming to Bihar at the scale that is required. We keep talking about water for running the Thermal plants and that we are not being allowed to use the water from Ganga for it... Why do we need water from Ganga... Let's spend on building a Canal system and perhaps the flood waters will themselves help run our Thermal power plants. Maybe with better electricity and availability of water, more industrial houses would be willing to set up shop in Bihar.

I see a lot of benefits from being able to channelize the flood waters for better use which benefits everyone. I hope the government also realizes this and does not delay any further on taking tangible actions on this at the earliest.

Source of data for Flood statistics - Flood Management Information System of Bihar

Friday, September 16, 2011

More rural roads in Bihar

Mr. Jairam Ramesh, the Union minister for rural development, has approved a plan to build a network of roads in Rural Bihar which will cover all the rural roads necessary to provide basic access to all habitations in Bihar. This is good news as now everyone will be connected to City and district headquaters and can start reaping benefits from the improvement in infrastructure and law and order in the state. These roads will also boost development activities in the tribal areas including the Maoist affected areas .

The roads will be built on under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana which aims to provide all-weather road connectivity in rural India.

The other advantage of these roads is that this new investments will continue to help Bihar's GDP growth in the near future.

More details can be found out in the Live Mint article Ramesh clears rural roads plan for Bihar

Metro rail in Patna

More good news for people living in Patna. The decks have been cleared to start Metro rail in Patna after the planning commission gave a go head. The Metro rail will run on two routes and the likely routes are
  1. Dak bunglow Square to Saguna Morh and
  2. Danapur to Patna city
This is good news as there are better chances of services industry like IT, BPO, etc to come and set up show in Patna since the commuting infrastructure in and around Patna would be greatly improved.

More details can be found in the Economic Times article "Metro rail to arrive in Patna"

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

US Congressional Report - Nitish Kumar highlighted

Many of you would have read about the US Congressional report, that talks about India's domestic issues, strategic dynamics and US relations. This article has highlighted and appreciated Narendra Modi and Nitish Kumar for their achievements in their respective states. (Its a different matter that people are playing politics around these reports).


However these are good achievements for both Narendra Modi and Nitish Kumar for getting recognized by the most powerful nation in today's times.


This is what has been said of Narendra Modi and Nitish Kumar:
  1. Narendra Modi  
    • Provided effective governance and impressive development, Streamlined economic processes, removed red tape and curtailed corruption in ways that have made the state a key driver for national economic growth.
  2.  Nitish Kumar
    • Successful in emphasizing good governance over caste-based politics, credited with restoring law and order across much of the state, as well as overseeing infrastructure and educational improvements of direct benefit to common citizens projects.
The report also highlights how Mayawati is taking a leaf out of Modi's and Nitish's good work to focus on development in U.P.


 This is a good recognition for both Narendra Modi and Nitish Kumar and I wanted to highlight Mr. Nitish Kumar's recognition to all those who have missed reading about it in the news. Good work Nitish Ji and Modi Ji.

The report goes on to highlight other states and issues, bilateral issues between various countries, the Kashmir problem, US - India collaboration, etc. Its a good article to read and the actual report can be found here: India: Domestic Issues, Strategic Dynamics, and U.S. Relations. Read when you get time or when  you have time to spare.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Child marriages in Bihar : The highest in India

A state which was at the pinnacle of education, seat of learning , etc should have the highest child marriages in India, should have surprised any rationale human. But knowing the state of affairs in Bihar over the last so many decades, many of us will not be surprised to hear that 68.9% of marriages in Bihar are child marriages.


As per Unicef,  Bihar has the highest percentage of child marriages in India with 68.9 % of the marriages in the state involving girls below the marriageable age of 18. Bihar is followed by Rajasthan, Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal. The percentages are below:

Rank
State
Percentage of Child marriages
1
Bihar
68.9
2
Rajasthan
63.5
3
Jharkhand
62.8
4
Andhra Pradesh
57.8
5
Uttar Pradesh
55.4
6
West Bengal
53.9

Now that we have made significant progress in the last 6 years in Bihar, it is time to focus on social issues too. Hopefully with the focus on improving the state of education in Bihar, we will see these numbers come down in the next 5-10 years. In parallel, the social welfare minister of Bihar has a stupendous task cut out: To create awareness against the pitfalls of child marriages. Some of the questions that come to my mind are
  1. Is there a focus to educate the people on the pitfalls of child marriages?
  2. How effective are these programs?
  3. What more can be done?
  4. How can people like us help?
Indian legislation banned child marriage in 1929 and enforced it with the Prohibition of Child Marriage Act 2006 making it illegal for girls to marry below age 18 and for boys below 21 years. Child marriage is an offense punishable with a fine up to Rs. 100,000 (One lakh) or  up to two years of imprisonment or both. Few get prosecuted, however.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Bihar's fight against corruption

It was a good day in Bihar. Bihar's fight saw a first , probably the first in India. The palatial house of an officer of the state who was found to be corrupt, has been converted into a school. A school in the neighbourhood that did not have a proper school building has started operating from this building.

Great start to the fight against corruption. I hope it only gathers further momentum.


(Photograph courtsey - The Hindu)

More details can be found in the article from The Hindu: Suspended IAS officer's mansion becomes a school


11th five year Plan - Bihar exceeds GSDP Growth target in the 1st four years

Everyone who has been following Bihar and its growth would know that Bihar's GSDP (Gross State Domestic Product) growth as of last year stood above 11% for the first 3 years of the 11th five year plan (2007-12). This made a lot of news and prompted many debates in and around March last year.

Booming Bihar: Fact or Fiction? - Article by R. Nagaraj  (Mar 2010)
Bihar - A Growth Story - TOI - Mumbai Edition (Jan 2010)
People were skeptical whether the growth story will continue and it has, atleast this year. The GSDP for Bihar for the 1st 4 years of the 11th five year plan stands at 11.44% against the plan target of 7.6%. This is good and I believe that a similar sustained growth over the next 5 years will ensure that the growth pattern in Bihar will have its own trajectory and that the state's situation cannot be turned back to the 1990's and early 2000's era.

Besides Bihar, Maharashtra, Chattisgarh, UP and Punjab also exceeded their set targets.

State
Target (%)
Achieved (%)
Bihar7.611.44
Chattisgarh8.69.71
Maharashtra9.19.42
Punjab5.97.5
Uttar Pradesh6.17.28

More details can be found in the MoneyControl article Only 5 states exceed 11th Plan growth targets: Govt

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Rampant copying in Bihar exams

Zee TV carried out a coverage of exams in Bihar in Mar 2010 which shows that coping is rampant in exams in Bihar.



I would like to think that things would have gotten better in the last 1.5 years and the education ministry would have taken steps to reduce copying in Bihar after the news was captured and flashed across India.

However, I just posted another article which showed the quality of education in Bihar. Looking in conjunction with what we see in the embedded youtube video of the Zee TV coverage, there is a lot of work that has to be done in the education system of Bihar.

The education minister / HRD minister of Bihar, has a lot of work cut out for him. The future of Bihar is in the hands of the Education (HRD) Minister and the Education (HRD) Ministry. Are they listening?

State of Education in Bihar

There was a time not long ago, about 5-6 years back when Bihar had an acute shortage of school teachers. There was a shortage of more than two lakh (2 Lakh) teachers, more like two and a half lakh (2.5 Lakh) teachers. So many teachers were required because the vacant positions had not been filled in mnay years.

The current government took an initiative to appoint two lakh school teachers. Hiring two lakh teachers at a shot meant that many untrained but educated youths got a change to become teachers. It also reduced crime on the streets as the unemployed educated youths got a change to give up street crime which not only let them make a decent recurring salary but also take up the noble profession of teaching.

However with the good, there were some problems too. Many of these teachers did not have teaching skills. Besides, corruption being present, many unqualified people became teachers over qualified ones. Here is an example of the state of teaching, specially in the rural areas:


Is this representative of the total education system in Bihar? - I do not know. However this is indicative of what has to be done. The first step was taken and well received by everyone who cared a dime about Bihar. But  that was in the past and not good enough now. The Education department , ministry and everyone concerned have to take steps to improve the quality of learning being imparted to the students. Only then Bihar will continue to become more competitive and the students will not face ridicule when when venture outside Bihar for higher education, jobs, etc. Imagine the kind of ridicule the students from this video will face when they venture outside Bihar and spell MONDAY as MANDE or APPLE as APIL.

Do we want our children to continue facing the ridicule that many amongst us from Bihar have faced all over India?

Thursday, August 11, 2011

How long can politics come in the way of development

Bihar is arguably one of the most backward states of India. There have been significant changes in the last few years like GDP growing to about 3 folds in 6-7 years time, much better roads, better connections to Patna, AC buses etc. However post Independence Bihar has lived in despondency primarily due to
  1. Freight equalization
  2. Center's negligence
  3. Successive state governments only intention of enriching themselves rather than the state.
  4. A large contingent of  governments servants specially in the Police, PWD , etc who thought that their departments were there to milk the people and made as much money for themselves as possible without contributing much at work.
At the time of getting Independence the Annual plan outlay of Bihar and Punjab were almost the same but over the years the the Annual Plan outlay of Punjab had grown 10 times to that of Bihar. However successive governments have turned a blind eye to the plight of the people of Bihar. In today's day when media has become so strong and electronic media, social media ,etc make it so much more easier to get information across, we still see a gross neglect of some parts of India , driven by political compulsions that comes in the way of equal opportunity for all the people of India.

Politicians keep at bay the fundamental rights of every citizen of India (which includes the Right to Equality), the very essence of India's democracy. So when the news comes that "Pranab Mukherjee okays Rs 21,614 crore package for West Bengal, Mamata not fully satisfied" ; some questions start coming to my mind:
  1. Why was this special package not given during the earlier state government's tenure, if the special package was so much deserved by West Bengal?
  2. Why was the package given within months of a UPA alliance government coming into power?
  3. What has Mamata Banerjee been able to put together in a matter of 3-4 months to justify a special package which the economically weaker states like Orissa and Bihar have not been able to do in years?
  4. Why has a similar package not been given to Bihar when Nitish Kumar has been vehemently asking for a special status for almost a year or more? Multiple representations made have fallen to deaf ears?
  5. Once the special package for West Bengal was announced, the PM speaks about constituting an inter ministerial committee to look at the demands of Bihar. Was a similar committee formed to vet the requirements of West Bengal?

Like many others, I am not disputing why West Bengal was given this special package, I am sure the people there will benefit out of it... My grudge is why wasn't a similar support given to Bihar when everyone knows that Bihar really needs some active support, more than many of the states and possibly including West Bengal too,  so that the people of Bihar can live better lives.

First the politicians at the center did not do any good for Bihar stating that Bihar is very rich in minerals and thereby helping other states benefit from these minerals by implementing freight equalization. Then the politicians at the center did not do anything for Bihar because they required the support of the politicians from Bihar to continue in power at the center and these Bihar politicians did not want development in Bihar.  Third and finally now the central government does not hear the wishes of the current government of Bihar because the ruling party in Bihar is not an UPA ally.  In every situation, it is Bihar that has lost;  it is Bihar and the people of Bihar who have suffered.
When will the people of the stature of Dr. Manmohan Singh, Pranab Mukherjee and others rise above petty political decisions and for once start thinking about the real development of entire India? When will these people start thinking for the better of India ? How long can we let political compulsions win at the expense of development?

Monday, August 8, 2011

Small investments trickle in ... But where are the large ones!!!

There has been no rush to invest in Bihar after the improved environment in Bihar. However small investments do trickle in. The most recent news on this in Economic Times is that Britannia industries will setup a bakery unit in Bihar at a cost of about Rs. 50-60 crores and follow it up with similar factories in Orissa, Karnataka and some place in Western India.

A review of recent investment proposals shows that most of the larger investments (investments more than Rs. 100 crores) proposals are in power production and distilleries. There are many smaller investment in Rice mills, etc which are below Rs. 10 crore investments, mostly 1-5 crores. I guess once we have more power generation capacity complemented by these smaller investments, we will be able to attract more larger investments.

However, even though these investment proposals come in, the CM/Cabinet are taking a long time to approve these proposals. Shouldn't the Cabinet or the CM wherever necessary, give utmost priority to clearing proposals quickly. I am not saying that the due delligence made in approving these projects be diluted ; what I am saying is that the focus should be to complete the due dilligence of these projects quickly.

For example when I look at the list of all SIPB (State Investment Promotion Board) approved projects list , I am surprised that many of these project proposals from 2009 / 10 have not been cleared by the CM / Bihar Cabinet. Now I do not know if all these proposal require the CM / the Bihar Cabinet's approval but from the looks of it, they do. 

All the proposals cleared by the SIPB from January 2011 have not received the Bihar CM/Cabinet approval. I can understand that for Thermal power plants there are problems of coal linkages and water supply. However what about the other projects like a steel rolling mill, a ketchup plant, Coca Cola plant, maize processing unit, flour mill, etc . Why are they taking time to be cleared. If they can't be cleared then they should be rejected. Why leave them open after SIPB approval? Nitish Kumar ji, where are the delays? Why is it taking so much time?

Here is the list of large proposals (> Rs. 100 Crores) that have been cleared by the SIPB in 2011 but have not been cleared by the Cabinet / CM.
Sr. No.Company NameProposalInvestment (Rs. In Crores)Direct Employment

1

M/S Casecade Power Ltd, Lakhisarai.

Proposal for establishment of 1320 (2x660) MW coal based Thermal Power Plant at Lakhisarai District in Bihar.

8343.50

400

2

M/S The West Coast Paper Mills Ltd, Karnataka.

Proposal for establishment of one Lakh MT per year capacity Duplex Board unit in first phase at Dalmia Nagar, Rohtas

350.00

500

3

M/S Era Infra
Engineering Ltd, New Delhi.

Proposal for establishment of  2640 (4x660) MW coal based Thermal Power Plant at Rajauli, Nawada and 1320 (2x660) MW coal based Thermal Power Plant at Pirpainti, Bhagalpur.

14800.00


7374.00

700


350

4

M/S Winsome
International Ltd, Samastipur ( Unit of M/S Rameshwara  Jute Mills)

Proposal for establishment of 35 MT per day capacity Jute Processing Unit, 40
MT per day capacity Corn Flakes manufacturing unit and establishment of Marketing Complex at Dharmpur, Samastipur.

160.00

155

5

M/S Dalmia Power Ltd, New Delhi.

Proposal for establishment of 1320 (2x660) MW coal based Thermal Power Plant at Dona, Banka.

7960.00

1500

6

M/S Sravanthi
Infratech Pvt. Ltd, Gurgaon, Haryana.

Proposal for establishment of 450 MW gas based Power Plant at Dehri-On-Sone, Rohtas.

1620.00

90

7

M/S Moser Baer Power and Infrastructures Ltd, New Delhi.

Proposal for establishment of 1980 MW Coal based Thermal Power Plant at Morma, Lakhisarai.

11000.00

2000

8

M/S Chandigarh
Distillers and Bottlers Ltd, Chandigarh.

Proposal for establishment of 330 Kilo Liter per day capacity ENA, IMFL, Country Liquor, RS, IND Alcohol, DNS, Ethanol Absolute Alcohol production unit at Patna / Vaishali.

140.50

140

9

M/S United Breweries
Ltd, Bangalore,
Karnataka
(U B Group)

Proposal for establishment of 10 lac Hecto Liter per year capacity Beer
production unit at Kopakala, Naubatpur, Patna.

200.00

294
I think that for attracting more investments in all other areas and more larger investments, it is important that the proposals are cleared fast. Infact the government should setup a process such that the proposals have to be cleared within a specified period of time (maybe 3 or 6 months  , or as deemed to be necessary) and the necessary officers including minister's in the proposal evaluation chain be held accountable for delays and their salary payments / incentives / promotions be linked to it. Further any proposal that has not got evaluated in that period of time, say 6 months , then the proposal should be automatically rejected and the proposal come for immediate hearing with the CM and the relevant minister. All people who have defaulted should be effectively penalized including suspension when 3 proposals default in a space of one year.

Bihar's growth is linked to investments in the agriculture and industrial segments. We have to facilitate proper investments in optimal periods of time so that Bihar and Bihar's people prosper. The GDP growth in the last 5-6 years were primarily fuelled by road construction and government spending, but will the GDP continue to grow and will more and more people start to prosper without the investments that are required to be made....!!!

Nitish ji and all Bihar Government ministers and officials : This needs serious attention... Please do what is good for Bihar.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Changing environment in Bihar - Public Private Partnership

Public private partnership is becoming a reality in Bihar. This is quite a change from before where Private firms are confident that they will be able to recover their investments made in Bihar.

Two major road projects
  1. Bridge over Ganga  (Estimated expense Rs. 1,602 crores)
  2. Road widening between Ara and Mohania (Estimated expense Rs. 917 crores)
will be constructed on a public private partnership. This step should give more business houses the confidence to invest in Bihar.

More details on the investments can be read in the Economic Times article Developers, investors queuing up to make the most of the growth story in Bihar

Per Capita Income of Bihar

Per Capita income of Bihar now stands at Rs 20,069 as per the Minister of State for Planing Ashwani Kumar. Delhi's per capita of Rs 1,35,814 income in reference is almost 7 times that of Bihar.

Ashwani Kumar added that During the first four years of the 11th Plan, "Bihar has registered an annual average per capital income growth rate of 18.4 per cent as compared to the growth rate of Delhi at 14.6 per cent," he said adding the higher growth rate was because of low base effect.

In contrast the per capita income of Bihar stood at Rs. 8,528 in 2004-05. It is significant change from Rs. 8,528 to Rs. 20,069 but there is still a lot of ground to cover.

A lot more investment is required in Bihar and unless investments come both in the Industries sector and the Agricultural sector, this gap will take a very long time to bridge.

More details about Minister of State for Planning, Ashwani Kumar's news can be read in the Economic Times at Delhi's per capita income 7 times more than Bihar's

Friday, July 29, 2011

Key Bihar Statistics

While reading Preeti Mehta’s article “Tales of a Neglected Hinterland” I saw some general demographical statistics and hence decided to explore some more statistics and the findings were interesting.
·         Out of a total area of 94,163 Sq Kms only 1.16% area is urban while the rest is rural.
·         There is one police station for every 110 Sq km area and 1,21,694 people.
·         There are 52.1 % males to 47.9% females i.e. 916 females for every 1000 males . In the age group of 0-6 the statistics seem to be a little better: There are 51.7% males to 48.3% females



Location


Bihar is located in the eastern part of the country (between 83°-30' to 88°-00' longitude). It is an entirely land–locked state, although the outlet to the sea through the port of Kolkata is not far away. Bihar lies mid-way between the humid West Bengal in the east and the sub humid Uttar Pradesh in the west which provides it with a transitional position in respect of climate, economy and culture. It is bounded by Nepal in the north and by Jharkhand in the south. The Bihar plain is divided into two unequal halves by the river Ganga which flows through the middle from west to east.



Physical Features




Latitude








      24°-20'-10" ~ 27°-31'-15" N







Longitude





82°-19'-50" ~ 88°-17'-40" E




Rural Area





92,257.51 sq. kms




Urban Area





1,095.49 sq. kms




Total Area





94,163.00 sq. kms




Height above Sea-Level





173 Feet




Normal Rainfall





1,205 mm




Avg. Number of Rainy Days





52.5 Days in a Year










 Administrative Units




Divisions








9







Districts





38




Sub-Divisions





101




CD Blocks





534




Panchayats





8,471




Number of Revenue Villages





45,103




Number of Urban Agglomerations





14




Number of Towns





199





  - Statutory Towns





139





  - Non-Statutory Towns





60




Police Stations





853





  - Civil Police Stations





813





  - Railway Police Stations





40




Police Districts





43





  - Civil Police District





39





  - Railway Police District





4











 Key Statistics - as per 2011 Census (Provisional)




Population








10,38,04,637








  - Male





5,41,85,347





  - Female





4,96,19,290




Population (0~6 Years Group)











  - In Absolute Numbers





1,85,82,229








Males




                   96,15,280








Females




             89,66,949




Literacy











  - In Absolute Numbers





5,43,90,254








Males




                 3,27,11,975








Females




          2,16,78,279





  - Percentage of Total Population





63.82%








Males




                  73.39%








Females




                 53.33%




Decadal Population Growth (2001-2011) 











  - Absolute





2,08,06,128





  - As Percentage





25.07%




Highest Decadal Growth at


Madhepura District


 (30.65%)




Lowest Decadal Growth at


Gopalganj District


 (18.83%)




Density of Population





1,102 per sq kms





  - Highest Density


Sheohar,


1882 per sq kms





  - Lowest Density


Kaimur,


488 per sq kms




Most Populous District


Patna:


57,72,804




Least Populous District


Sheikhpura:


6,34,927




Sex Ratio (Females/Thousand Males)





916





  - Highest Ratio


(Gopalganj)


1,015





  - Lowest Ratio


Munger and Bhagalpur)


(879




Highest Literacy Rate


Rohtas,


75.59%




Lowest Literacy Rate


Purnia,


52.49%




Average Population of a District





27,31,701

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