Centre sitting on JnNURM projects mooted for Bengaluru, Mysuru

Centre sitting on JnNURM projects mooted for Bengaluru, Mysuru

Rejects some, keeps others pending since March 2014; total cost Rs 5,800 cr

Centre sitting on JnNURM projects mooted for Bengaluru, Mysuru

Major infrastructure projects proposed by Karnataka under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JnNURM) for Bengaluru and Mysuru since March 2014 have either been rejected or stalled by the Centre.

The Union Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD) has either not sanctioned or withheld approval for as many as 26 projects worth Rs 5,800.39 crore submitted by the State government under the JnNURM transition phase, according to officials in the Urban Development Department.

Some of the major projects which have not been sanctioned or are pending with the MoUD include the much-hyped steel elevated bridge from Minerva Circle to Hudson Circle, construction of an elevated corridor from Ejipura main road to Koramangala, construction of an eight-lane corridor between Okalipuram junction and Fountain Circle near Bengaluru City railway station and construction of four railway underbridges along Mysuru ring road.

According to UDD officials, the elevated road from Minerva Junction to Hudson Circle has not been sanctioned because of it being, “Approved by the 131st CSMC (Central Sanctioning and Monitoring Committee) on February 14, 2013, but (the) 1st Additional Central Assistance (ACA) not released, hence considered not sanctioned as per the latest communique from MoUD.” The same reason has been given for the integrated elevated road between Ejipura and 100 Feet Inner Ring Road in Koramangala.

Karnataka has withdrawn seven projects though they were approved by the CSMC. These include the sewerage diversion and flood mitigation project to improve the environment surrounding the water bodies in Mahadevapura, Dasarahalli and Yelahanka zones of the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP).

Projects such as the eight-lane road between Okalipuram junction and Fountain Circle, for which the Congress government cleared the last hurdle recently by convincing the railways to part with its land, have also been shelved indefinitely. This project has been pending with the MoUD with no signs of any progress.

Ten other projects are also pending with the MoUD, UDD officials said.
Besides, the Centre has not sanctioned 213 projects worth Rs 6,384.33 crore under the Urban Infrastructure Development Scheme for Small and Medium Towns (UIDSSMT) and 15 projects under the Rajiv Awas Yojana (RAY) worth Rs 379.95 crore. These proposals were submitted in 2013-14.

Sources in the government say the main reason for the projects being either withheld or not sanctioned is the previous government’s flawed policy during its final days. The UPA government, the sources said, had sanctioned assistance to states on a first come-first served basis. But Karnataka, despite recommending projects under the above-mentioned schemes, was on the losing end as the UPA government kept all the projects on the back burner as the model code of conduct for Lok Sabha elections, 2014, had come into force.

UDD Minister Vinay Kumar Sorake has, however, not lost hope. He said the State government would impress upon the Centre why these projects were needed.

“Last week, I wrote to all Members of Parliament (MP) from Karnataka to use their contacts to get the Centre’s sanction for these projects. We will wait and watch how the Centre responds,” he said.

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