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QuEST set to roll out plans for 300-acre aerospace SEZ

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QuEST set to roll out plans for 300-acre aerospace SEZ Engineering services major, QuEST, has received an in-principle clearance from the Govt of India’s Board of Approvals to establish a 300-acre special economic zone (SEZ) in Belgaum, Karnataka, where it proposes to build an ecosystem for an aerospace supply chain.The SEZ will carry out precision machining and house suppliers in a single area. According to QuEST officials, talks are currently on with a handful of potential domestic companies and MNCs for the setting up of units at the SEZ. The SEZ is eventually expected to employ 10,000 people.QuEST’s present facility in Bangalore is also scheduled to move into the SEZ as a 2,00,000 sq ft plant. The facility marked QuEST’s move into manufacturing from being an end-to-end engineering solutions company.According to QuEST officials, there was a need felt for a dedicated aerospace engineering SEZ, following the huge growth in engineering services off-shoring from India, as well as the ‘offset clause’ for aircraft firms supplying to Indian carriers, which determines that they need to source a certain part of their supplies from India. According to latest industry figures released by Nasscom, global spending on engineering services was $750 billion in 2004, with aerospace accounting for 8%. This could rise to $1.1 trillion by 2020.The total offshore engineering spend is expected to grow to $150-225 billion by 2020 and India, with its talent pool and experience in engineering services, could pick up 25% of that. According to QuEST, there is an opportunity of achieving exports of close to $1 billion a year by 2012.The ‘offset clause’ for aircraft manufacturers is also expected to give a big fillip to aerospace-linked manufacturing. India is set to issue an RFP for its medium range multi role combat aircraft (MMRCA) programme, through which it plans to buy 126 fighter jets, valued at close to $10 billion. If Airbus’s projections of Indian firms placing orders for 1,100 passenger and freighter aircraft, valued at about $105 billion over the next 20 years, is anything to go by, then with the current offset clause pegged at 30% of the purchase value, the local aerospace manufacturing industry may expect to generate at least $3 billion worth of business over the next 10 years.QuEST, which has been growing at 40% year-on-year, is the only engineering services company that works with the top three global aero-engine makers – GE, Rolls Royce and Pratt & Whitney. Very recently, the company had announced that it had received Airbus design approval and AS9100 certification. This will enable QuEST to work on upcoming Airbus programmes like the A350 in areas of engineering design, documentation and manufacturing engineering.Quest officials also say that a significant amount of the defence offset business, and some of the commercial offset business is expected to be routed through HAL, which in turn could sub-contract it to Indian private players. this is great bonus to belgaum engineers and industry …

This matter has been mailed to me by Sheri, Thanks to you for the update.

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  1. Belgaum, a centre of the freedom struggle

    Belgaum and its adjoining regions — Bombay Karnataka in popular parlance — have always been the geographical meeting point of Marathi and Kannada cultures. It was a centre of the freedom struggle.

    In 1857, when the Indo-Gangetic plain was convulsed by the fires of a sepoy-led rebellion against colonial rule, its echo was heard in Belgaum.

    Instigation

    A Muslim Wahabi and ‘munshi’ in the army were discovered instigating sepoys in Belgaum in August 1857; five of them were executed by the British and four others imprisoned for life. Mahipalsingh was deputed by Raja Venkatappa Nayaka of Shorapur (Gulbarga district) to instigate sepoys in the native infantry in Belgaum. Though he succeeded in persuading a considerable number of soldiers to revolt, his plot was discovered and he was arrested and hanged. Bhaskar Rao alias Babasaheb of Nargund planned a revolt and attacked a British contingent, but was caught in Torgal and later hanged in Belgaum. His ‘samadhi’ is located at the Military Dairy.

    Kittur Rani

    The history of Belgaum is not complete without a mention of Rani Channamma, the Queen of Kittur, whose heroic resistance to the British is commemorated in song and story. The queen refused a surrender offer and promise of ‘justice’ and instead attacked the enemy surrounding her fort, on December 3, 1824. The queen and her small army put up a heroic fight but were eventually defeated. She was jailed at Bailhongal where she died in 1829.

    Heroic too was Sangolli Rayanna, a servant of Kittur State, who gathered a considerable band and carried forward the fight. He was later overpowered, arrested and hanged in 1830 at Nandgadh.

    A.O. Hume visited Belgaum to propagate Congress ideals in 1893. Since then the district has served as home for both the ‘naram’ and ‘garam’ (moderate and extremist) factions of the Congress. The region was greatly influenced by Balgangadhar Tilak who visited Belgaum in 1906. Several leaders emerged here, including Gangadhar Rao Deshpande, Annu Guruji, Jivanrao Yalgi, Ramchandra Wadavi and Baburao Thakur.

    Swadeshi movement

    During the swadeshi movement of 1905-08, Govindrao Yalgi was responsible for starting secret revolutionary associations. Belgaum was made headquarters of the State unit of Tilak’s Home Rule League.

    Belgaum played host to the historic 39th Plenary Session of the All-India Congress in 1924 (December 26 to 28), the only Congress session presided over by Mahatma Gandhi. The session saw the return of the Swaraj Party into the Congress fold.

    Gangubai’s performance

    An 11-year-old girl named Gangubai Hangal rendered the famous Kannada anthem, “Udayavagali Namma Cheluva Kannadanadu”, especially composed for the occasion by Hailgol Narayan Rao of Gadag on the opening day of the session.

    As per the Lahore Congress decision, Independence Day was celebrated on January 26, 1930 by hoisting the tricolour in several places in the district. Thousands took the oath for freedom. This was followed by Gandhi’s Salt Satyagraha. In Belgaum, Gangadhar Rao sold contraband salt on April 6, 1930 at a public meeting, the same day that Gandhiji broke the salt law at Dandi.

    After a lull in the movement because of the Gandhi-Irwin Pact of 1831, the Civil Disobedience movement started once again in 1932, and 113 people from Belgaum taluk alone were convicted. They included Annu Guruji and four women from Ankalgi.

    Good response

    Veteran freedom fighter Krishna Mense recalls the overwhelming response in Belgaum and surrounding areas to the Quit India Movement. Large numbers of peasants, labourers and the weaker sections of society had joined the movement.

    August 15, 1947 turned out to be a great festival when thousands took out a massive procession in Ganpat galli in Belgaum city to celebrate independence.

    sheri sundeep

  2. KLE student bags Fa Ms Chennai 2007 title

    Chandani Nahar, a student of KLES Law College, won the ‘Miss Pearl Persona Award’ at the recently held Fa Ms Chennai 2007 contest.

    She is also good in academic and stood first in the college in the 1, II, III and IV semesters LLB examinations. Chandani’s brother, Amit P Nahar bagged Fa Chennai Man 2007 title.

    He will represent India at the Mr Intercontinental contest in which participants from about 60 countries will participate. This is the first time in India that a professionally qualified brother-sister acclaimed fame in such a reputed contest. Chandani and Amit are the children of Dr Prakash Nahar, senior radiologist and manufacturer of Indu dental products.

  3. Railway service between Belgaum-Dharwad in the offing

    It seems that the dream of former Belgaum MP, S B Sidnal of starting railway service from Belgaum to Dharwad via Bailhongal may soon become reality as the Railway Ministry is contemplating in this regard and is expected to conduct a survey soon.

    Thanks to Belgaum MP Suresh Angadi for his efforts to take up the proposal which was pending with the Ministry for more than 15 years.

    Sidnal had tabled a proposal of starting railway service between Belgaum and Hubli either along the Pune-Bangalore national highway 4 or via Bailhongal town.

    It is learnt that the Ministry had also proposed to lay double track between Bangalore and Pune which was expected to get a nod shortly. The Belgaum railway station would also be upgraded.

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