Rs 600 Cr Earmarked For Srinagar Under Capital City Development Plan

SRINAGAR: In a significant decision aimed at transforming the developmental scenario of the State’s twin capital cities, the Government has decided to create a separate Capital City Development Plan (CCDP) for Srinagar and Jammu cities and detach it from the District Development Plan.

This major policy shift on the developmental front for the capital cities was announced at the meeting of the District Development Board (DDB) Srinagar, convened here today under the chairmanship of Chief Minister, Ms Mehbooba Mufti, an official spokesperson said.

Under the plan, city development agencies like Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC), Srinagar Development Authority (SDA), Lakes and Waterways Development Authority (LAWDA), the Cantonment Board and other externally aided projects aimed at infrastructure development in the summer capital shall be de-linked from funding under the district plan and provided with dedicated resources under an independent arrangement.

The decision was taken to pace up the developmental progress of the city and augment the socio economic infrastructure in view of the increasing population and demands. The step would delink the development of the city from the District administration, thus enhancing the efficiency of service delivery and saving the time on project completions.

A similar Capital City Development Plan would be formulated for Jammu city.

For implementation of Capital City Development Plan, the Chief Minister, who is also in-charge Planning and Development Department, announced an allocation of Rs 600 crore for Srinagar city for 2017-18, which would be over and above Rs 102 crore annual plan for the district. She said besides undertaking major infrastructure development activities in Srinagar city through SMC, SDA, LAWDA and other agencies in a coordinated and substantive manner under CCDP, Rs 50 lakh would be provided to each constituency in district Srinagar for focused infrastructure development in each and every area.

The Chief Minister said that the funds for implementation of CCDP would be pooled in from the State’s own resources, Prime Minister’s Developmental Programme (PMDP), Centrally Sponsored Schemes and Public-Private Partnership.

Regarding the accomplishment of the CCDP, the Chief Minister said the independent over-arching body to oversee the implementation shall be headed by an elected Mayor. “Till the time such a constitutional arrangement is put in place, the respective Divisional Commissioners of Jammu/Kashmir will be designated the Nodal Authorities for implementation of CCDP,” she said.

She said the new developmental mechanism would be aimed at improving and augmenting the economic and social infrastructure of Srinagar and Jammu cities in a coordinated manner with adequate availability of resources. “CCDP would be based on assessment of the existing developmental scenario in the capital cities of Srinagar and Jammu, outlining a vision for future development and strategizing for achieving these objectives,” she said and added that it will also work-out the indicative investment requirements and financial operating plans, indicating how investments made in public infrastructure are to be sustained.

The Chief Minister said CCDP initiative would also ensure coordinated infrastructure development in the capital cities, as otherwise multiplicity of executing and implementing agencies has resulted in lopsided planning and non-productive utilization of resources. It would ensure planned development of the capital cities including peri-urban areas, out growths and urban corridors, so that urbanization takes place in a dispersed and uniform manner,” she said adding that the new mechanism would also help scale up the delivery of civic amenities and provision of utilities to the residents of Srinagar and Jammu cities.

 The Chief Minister described Srinagar as a unique city and one of the oldest in the country after Varanasi. She said it is the duty of everybody to take the city to the heights commensurate with its culture, history and rich heritage. She hoped that this year working season would be utilized full to execute the works and compensate the loss of time during last fiscal.

Terming the old city as a symbol of heritage, Mehbooba Mufti asked for dovetailing handicrafts and heritage in city development in such a fashion to make Srinagar an attraction for art and heritage lovers. She said her Government is trying to promote Srinagar as a tourist destination in itself and this year 23 projects worth Rs. 123 crore have been taken up in the city. She directed exploring the tourist potential of water bodies in the city besides Dal like Chounte Kul, Kitte Kul, Sonner Kul etc.

Mehbooba Mufti also stressed on giving a thought to operationalisation of water transport through Jhelum and across Dal to develop alternate transportation and increase the tourist footfall in the city. She directed completion of work on all ongoing projects in the city.

In today’s meeting, the board approved an outlay of Rs 600 crore under the Capital City Plan for 2017-18 for the Srinagar city. This is in addition to Rs 102 crore under district sector allocation for the city.

The Chief Minister, who also holds the portfolio of Planning & Development, approved release of Rs. 34 crore as additionality for the current fiscal besides Rs. 20 crore for settling cases of land acquisition and other expenses.

In another major decision, the Chief Minister directed release of Rs 50 lakh in respect of all the Assembly constituencies of the city to be utilized for civic repairs by the concerned MLAs.

In a specific direction, the Chief Minister ordered immediate repairs of the toilets in offices, schools and hospitals.

Deputy Chief Minister, Dr Nirmal Singh in his observations said the Srinagar city would be developed in a befitting manner and in tune with its historic and cultural grandeur. He hoped that the Departments like Power and Urban Development would improve their functioning further thereby improving the quality of life of the city dwellers.

Minister for PWD, Naeem Akhtar in his observations assured the members that the Government would give the city one of the best infrastructures in a short time. He said the upcoming Soiteng Bridge would be connected with Mehjoor Nagar to give the city an alternative entry route. He asked the R&B Department to start the process of ditch filling and metalling of all roads in the city ahead of starting macadamisation during summer season.

Later the board approved the annual plan for Srinagar for 2017-18.

16 Projects Under AMRUT Sanctioned For Sgr

16 projects for Rs 234 crore have been sanctioned under AMRUT for Srinagar city and out of these work on four has been started. Also the Rs 3600 crore Smart City project is being submitted to Centre for approval under which 101 projects of city development would be taken.

This was disclosed in a meeting of District Development Board Srinagar here today which was chaired by Chief Minister, Mehbooba Mufti, who is also chairperson of the board, an official spokesperson said.

The Smart City project among other things envisages development of 1180 acres of old city, rejuvenation and beautification of Jhelum river fronts and adjoining markets, protection and preservation of some 200 marked heritage buildings besides developing walkways and improving urban transportation in the Srinagar city.

Addressing the meeting, the Chief Minister directed the officers to expedite the works and complete the projects within deadline. She said already much of the working season was lost in the Valley and further loss of time cannot be countenanced.

Mehbooba Mufti directed exploring the possibilities of raising flat type accommodations for the city dwellers so that they don’t have to relocate far away and also housing needs of people would also be largely addressed.

On the cultural richness of the city, Mehbooba Mufti directed   exploring possibilities of setting up an Art Gallery in Srinagar. She said a huge treasure of artefacts in the city is lying unattended and stressed the need for having a gallery to show case the local art and heritage. She also directed expeditious completion of work on the SPS Museum.

In the PWD sector, the meeting was informed, six bridges in the district are in advanced stages of completion and are likely to be completed by this year end. Moreover, work on the Rs 1861 crore semi ring road project for the city is expected to be started this year for which land acquisition process is being expedited.

In the health sector, the meeting was informed that nine major projects are under execution in the summer capital. This includes a 500 bedded Paediatric hospital at Bemina and World Bank aided 250 bed additional block of Lal Ded hospital besides developing a Centre of Excellence Ophthalmology Centre at SMHS over a cost of Rs. Seven crore.

 The meeting was also informed that Solid Waste Management project worth Rs 90 crore is under execution at Achen

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