[Assam] Multiple Time Zones in India

Manoj Das dasmk2k at gmail.com
Sun May 6 22:34:27 PDT 2007

The issue of having a separate local time for NER was first advocated by Mr
Khushwant Singh in his 'malice' column. He felt the need after visiting
Guwahati. I also wrote one or two letters in the Assam Tribune in support of
the idea. There was a Prliamentary question on this by Dr. Arun Sarma, MP.

A local time will not only save energy, but will also increase efficiency.
Tea gardens have their own time, which is nothing but the local time based
on the location of the Sun at noon. Kids going to Government schools will be
most benefitted. Now they go to school at 10 AM, which is actually 11:30 AM
as per local time. Human body is most active in the morning hours and by the
time office goers attend their offices, most of the energetic time is gone.
Efficiency will increase by more than 20%, if the local time is advanced by
1 and half hours. In the Hills it's dark by 4:30 PM.

Bangladesh which is to the West of us has half an hour lead. There is no
reason why, NER should not have a separate local time zone. We should think
logically and scientifically. In a resource starved economy like ours, every
possible wastage should be plugged.


On 5/7/07, Dilip/Dil Deka <dilipdeka at yaho o.com> wrote:
> Will it produce any positive results? Study is one thing and a logical
> decision is another.
> From the Indian Express.
> Dilip
> ===============================================================
> Front Page PAGE 1 ANCHOR IST not helping, North-East needs separate time
> zone to save power, says House panel
> Amitabh Sinha Posted online: Monday, May 07, 2007 at 0000 hrs
>  *NEW DELHI, MAY 6:* Reopening the debate on the need for more than one
> time zone in India, the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Energy has
> mentioned the proposal in the context of saving power consumption in
> North-Eastern states. The logic behind the argument is that owing to early
> sunset in the North-East, lights have to be switched on in offices in the
> evening, leading to excess consumption of power. This can be avoided by
> advancing the clock by one or one-and-half hours so that offices close
> before sunset. This has reopened an issue that seemed to have been settled
> long back when an expert committee had examined the proposal in a different
> context and recommended to the Department of Science and Technology that
> there was no need for a different time zone for the North-East. "The
> committee had unanimously felt that the gains accruing out of having a
> different time zone were not proportionate to the practical problems and
> confusion that it could lead to," said Dr Krishan Lal, the then director of
> the National Physical Laboratory and a member of the committee. India's
> width, from Gujarat to Arunachal Pradesh, does make a case for having two
> time zones within the country. Russia has eleven time zones while the United
> States and Canada have six. However, China, which is much broader than
> India, sticks to only one time zone, the largest country to do so. The
> decision generally rests with the country itself taking into account its
> convenience and international conventions. India currently follows a time,
> which is 5-1/2 hours ahead of the international standard, Greenwich Mean
> Time (GMT). The proposed new time zone would put the North-Eastern states
> six-hours ahead of GMT, at par with Bangladesh. The demand for two time
> zones in India had first come from the North-Eastern states in the
> mid-Nineties with the reasoning that by the time people went for work,
> nearly half the day had already been lost because the sun rises in the
> region between 4.30 am and 5 am. The government set up a committee to
> examine the issue in 2001 with the then Science and Technology Secretary V S
> Ramamurthy, Dr Krishan Lal and the then Chief Secretary of Tripura V
> Thulasidas — now the Chairman-cum-Managing Director of Air India — as
> members. The committee held a meeting with representatives of the
> North-Eastern states along with those of Bihar, West Bengal and Orissa,
> which also fell in the proposed new time zone. The committee reasoned that
> the problem of the North-Eastern states could easily be solved by advancing
> the office timings by a couple of hours.
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