With state assembly elections round the corner, Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav is on a spree to launch projects before the model code of conduct comes into effect.
On Tuesday, the chief minister dedicated 910 projects to the public, while foundation stones of 13 projects were laid. In addition, the Samajwadi Pension was given to about 9.11 lakh pensioners and 20,913 laptops were distributed to meritorious students.
In line with his project-inauguration spree, Akhilesh will launch the Rs 2,100-crore CG City project that will host an IT park, an Indian Institute of Information Technology (IIIT), a modern milk processing plant, the Uttar Pradesh Administrative Academy, Medicity and a super-specialty cancer institute among other projects on Wednesday.
As a tough four-corner contest between ruling Samajwadi Party (SP), Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), BJP and the Congress looms on the political horizon, Akhilesh has set aside political issues to focus on securing some projects to showcase to the voters.
The Uttar Pradesh government finally applied and received 11,286 housing projects for the urban poor from the NDA government on Tuesday.
Ever since the scheme was launched in June last year, UP was the only state that stayed away from it, widening the political differences between the BJP-led government and the ruling SP. The Centre approved projects worth `51,840 crore in urban housing for seven states and Union Territories.
With a total project approval of 13,46,984 units, the BJP-led government has bypassed the UPA’s record of sanctioning 12,91,486 units under the Rajiv Awas Yojana.
UP’s keenness for urban housing projects is significant. Urban development minister Venkaiah Naidu wrote 14 letters to Akhilesh in the past one year, but received a cold response. Now, the BJP can also try to reap political dividends through the social sector scheme that is aimed at the urban poor.
The other projects coming up in the state include a Sanskriti school, a housing scheme for the economically weaker sections and a new OPD building of the Sanjay Gandhi Postgraduate Institute of Medical Sciences (SGPGI).
(With inputs from Lucknow)