The Prime Minister’s Office has started directly monitoring development projects in Varanasi, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s parliamentary constituency.
The PMO has instructed divisional commissioner Nitin Ramesh Gokarn to give a day-to-day report about the progress of the projects. A copy of the report will also be sent to the Uttar Pradesh chief minister’s office. The step has been taken to ensure timely completion of the projects.
Gokarn held a meeting with the district magistrate, the joint development commissioner, the municipal commissioner, the chief development officer and the regional tourism officer on Sunday.
He instructed heads of various departments to mail the daily progress report about the projects associated with their respective departments to district magistrate Yogeshwar Ram Mishra and the joint development commissioner by noon daily. The aim is to ensure the combined progress report reaches him on time so that he can forward it to the chief minister’s office and the PMO daily.
“The progress report will be sent to the PMO and the CM office daily,” Gokarn said.
He instructed the officials to complete ongoing works under HRIDAY (Heritage City Development and Augmentation Yojana) and Namami Gange schemes here.
HRIDAY is an ambitious scheme launched by the centre to ensure development in 12 heritage cities, including Varanasi.
Under the scheme, infrastructure development has to be carried out at 84 heritage locations in Varanasi.
Development work is already underway at many of these locations. Murals of noted figures, ghats and the heritage of Kashi have been made on boundary walls of buildings along roads at 10 locations, including Lahurabeer and Kabeer Chaura, in Varanasi. Murals will be made at 14 more locations.
Thematic development of 34 roads is also part of the project wherein images of icons connected with Varanasi will be put up at prominent crossings.
Lights with a heritage look will be installed along these roads. The scheme has already been implemented in Kabir Nagar. Similarly, Townhall will be redeveloped as a heritage centre.
Under Namami Gange, construction of a 140 MLD (million litres daily) sewage treatment plant at Dinapur is already underway. The process for construction of a 50 MLD sewage treatment plant at Ramana with an estimated cost of Rs 120 crore has started. The tender for the same has been floated. The Centre has given its in-principle approval for funds for the project.
An awareness drive among locals in villages along the Ganga for afforestation is also part of the scheme. Gokarn has asked the Varanasi Municipal Corporation (VMC) authorities to speed up implementation so that the project can be completed on time.
Namami Gange is a flagship programme launched by the centre to clean the Ganga and enhance biodiversity by motivating locals to plant more saplings along the river bank.