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Shivraj asks Sam to mentor knowledge, environs cities

Source: Daily Pioneer, Jun 11, 2012

MP Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has expressed gratitude to Advisor to Prime Minister and chairman of National Innovation Council Sam Pitroda for his State visit and has urged him to become mentor of ambitious projects for establishment of a Knowledge City near Ujjain and development of Bhopal as a global Environment City. Chouhan has made this appeal in a letter to Pitroda.

During his recent visit to Bhopal, the senior planning expert held detailed talks with Chouhan and officials of the State Government over transforming Ujjain into a Knowledge City and Bhopal into Environment City. Pitroda also lavished praise on IT sector works in the State.

He has also expressed desire to extend necessary cooperation and guidance to the Madhya Pradesh Government. Following his discussions with Pitroda, the Chief Minister has written a letter to him seeking his cooperation and guidance.

Ujjain is one of the most ancient cities of the world. Yogeshwar Krishna had received education in Sandeepni Ashram. Ujjain also has a distinct identity in the history of Indian science and knowledge. The names of great scholars such as Varahmihir, poets such as Kalidas and Emperor Ashoka have been associated with Ujjain. The city is known the world over for its research and findings in the fields of astrology, mathematics and calculation of time. The observatory established by Raja Jai Singh stands testimony to its greatness.

The Knowledge City will be developed on about 500 acres of land at a cost of Rs 3,500 crore. Pitroda has not only lauded the concept of Knowledge City but has also suggested it be developed into a centre of research in science and knowledge.

The plan to develop Bhopal into a global Environment City is also a result of the Chief Minister’s pragmatic thinking. Following leakage of toxic gas from the Union Carbide plant in 1984, this beautiful city came to be known worldwide for the wrong reason. This negative identity of Bhopal can only be changed by developing it into an Environment City.

According to Chouhan, Bhopal is the only city which has a national park in its midst. Two world heritage sites including Bhimbhetka and Sanchi are situated with a 40-kilometre radius of the city. Bhopal has two big lakes besides a number of small water bodies and hillocks covered with greenery.

Despite being the fastest growing city of the country, Bhopal has been able to preserve its natural beauty and greenery to a large extent. During his Bhopal visit, Pitroda wished to rope in top international environmentalists with the Environment City project. The Chief Minister has urged Pitroda to become a mentor of the project in view of his advice and spirit of cooperation.

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