Six more city corporations may come under JnNURM

The State government has sought Rs 10,400 crore from the Centre for upgrading infrastructure facilities in the urban local bodies (ULBs) in the State, excluding Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike, Urban Development Minister Vinay Kumar Sorake said on Tuesday.

Speaking to reporters, he said the State government had proposed to take up, among others, drinking water supply projects in 87 ULBs and underground drainage projects in 47 ULBs. In addition to this, the government recently submitted a Rs 5,200-crore proposal to the Centre for taking up the second phase of Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JnNURM) in Bangalore and Mysore cities, he added.

Now, population is not a criterion for including a ULB under JnNURM. The State government has, therefore, proposed to include six more city corporations under the mission. They are Hubli-Dharwad, Belgaum, Bellary, Mangalore, Davangere and Gulbarga, he added.

There is a need for a long-term planning for infrastructure in urban areas of the State. Hence, the government has decided to prepare a separate master plan for infrastructure development in each of the city corporations, excluding BBMP, Sorake said.

The minister said the government had set up a seed fund of Rs 3,250 crore in the Urban Development department with an aim to extend loans to ULBs for taking up infrastructure projects.

The Cabinet has already given its consent to it, he added.

Sorake said the government is planning to form greater Mangalore city corporation by including Mulki and Ullal towns, on the lines of Greater BBMP. However, the proposal to form Greater Mysore has been shelved as there was opposition to merge Srirangapatna town with Mysore city, he said.

He said the government had directed the deputy commissioners of Mandya and Ramanagar districts to send a proposal on forming Mandya-Maddur and Ramanagar-Channapatna-Bidadi city corporations. The direction has been issued following  a demand from local people in this regard, he added.

Besides, there is a proposal to upgrade 15 town municipal councils into city municipal councils, 18 taluk panchayats into town municipal councils and 164 gram panchayats into taluk panchayats. The government will take a decision on the proposal in about two months, he said.

Asked about the long-pending proposal to merge urban development authorities with the ULBs, the minister said the government does not have any such plan. “We actually want to strengthen these authorities and enable them to provide better services to the people,” he stated.

‘B’ khata in Dakshina Kannada, Udupi

Sorake said the government was planning to introduce ‘B’ khata system in rural areas (panchayat limits) on the lines of Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike. However, there is no plan to introduce it in other ULB limits, he added.

He said ‘B’ khata will be introduced on a pilot basis in Dakshina Kannada and Udupi districts. Later, it will be extended to all districts, he added.

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