Tuesday, July 23, 2024

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KTR demands sufficient allocation of Central funds

Municipal Administration and Urban Development Minister KT Rama Rao urged the Centre to allot sufficient funds in the 2023-24 Central budget for Telangana’s urban sector initiatives.

Reeling out the trailblazing initiatives implemented by the BRS government from 2014 under the leadership of Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao to improve urban infrastructure, KTR said that many projects were either held up or are proceeding slowly although problems were informed to the Centre.

With 46.8 per cent of its population living in cities, KTR said that Telangana is an urban State where the number of Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) increased from 68 to 142.

He said that a new Act, the Telangana Municipalities Act, 2019, was introduced which included a mandatory provision of 10 per cent of the ULB Budget as ‘Green Budget,’ and a self-certification based single window online approval system for building approvals (TSbPASS Act).

He listed the various urban infrastructure projects launched by the TS government on its own like the Strategic Road Development Project (SRDP), the Strategic Nala Development Project (SNDP), the Comprehensive Road Maintenance Project (CRMP), the Hyderabad Road Development Corporation (HRDC), the Musi River Development Corporation (MRDC) and the Telangana Urban Infrastructure Development Corporation (TUFIDC).

KTR said the efforts to develop Hyderabad holistically won global laurels as the city continues to be the best city for the sixth year in a row in Mercer’s Quality of Living Index.

The city was also adjudged as the World Green City 2022 by AIPH, and it is the only city of India to be crowned among the Tree Cities of the World by the Arbor Day Foundation and UN agencies.

Declaring that the State government is committed to fueling growth in all urban areas, KTR listed problems and placed requests regarding development projects hoping that the Centre will support the State at least in the next Union Budget.

He said that the Hyderabad Airport Express Metro Project (31 km) was undertaken at an estimated cost of Rs 6,250 crore as a fully funded Telangana government project. He sought in-principle approval of the Centre for the project.

He said that Rs 254 crore, part of the viability gap funding for the Hyderabad Metro Rail Project, has been pending for five years, and urged the Centre to speed up its clearance.

KTR said the preliminary estimate for taking up the Mass Rapid Transit System (MRTS) extending 20 km in the Hyderabad Urban Agglomeration is Rs 3,050 crore and urged the Centre to provide Rs 450 crore as 15 per cent of its equity.

He urged the Centre to provide Rs 800 crore which is one-third of the cost of the project to construct link roads in 104 corridors. The total cost of the project is Rs 2,400 crore.

Stating that a Detailed Project Report (DPR) to provide relief from traffic congestion on NH 65 was prepared, he urged the Centre to sanction Rs 500 crore for it.

KTR said that under the Strategic Road Development Project (SRDP) infrastructure projects like skywalks, major corridors, major roads and flyovers were taken up and its first phase was completed using term loans from financial institutions and the sale of municipal bonds by the GHMC.

He said that the DPR for Phase–II of the project was completed with the following proposals: Rs 11,500 crore for the Musi Riverfront Development and East-West Expressway, Rs 14,000 crore for SRDP Phase II, and Rs 9,000 crore for the development of elevated corridors.

KTR requested the Centre for Rs 3,450 crore which is 10 per cent of the project cost of Rs 34,500 crore. He also requested an incentive for the GHMC for raising the third tranche of municipal bonds.

Listing important projects like the solid waste management project, bio-mining, faecal sludge treatment plants (FSTP), and wastewater treatment projects, KTR urged the Centre to provide Rs 750 crore which is 20 per cent of the total project cost of Rs 3,777 crore.

He urged the Centre to provide one-third of Rs 8,684 crore which is the total project cost for 41 sewage treatment plants with a capacity of 1591 MLD and for 2232 km of sewer lines.

KTR said the Strategic Nala Development Plan (SNDP) was taken up to prevent flooding during heavy rains in Hyderabad city and in the Hyderabad urban agglomeration and requested Rs 240 crore for it.

He urged the Centre to provide Rs 400 crore under the Swachh Bharat Mission to improve sanitation in Hyderabad.

He requested seed funding of Rs 100 crore for the establishment of the Telangana Sanitation Hub, a first-of-its-kind facility in the country.

KTR said that Telangana was contributing substantially towards the nation’s economy and that the country stands to gain if such a ‘successful’ State is supported.

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