A day before chief minister Akhilesh Yadav presents the state budget for 2015-2016, the state cabinet approved a number of developmental and populist projects. These include exemption in entertainment tax for heritage hotels, training centres for economically backward youth and setting up 100% funded solar streetlights in the Lohia villages of Uttar Pradesh.
Chief minister Akhilesh Yadav presided over a meeting of the cabinet that also decided to allocate Rs 854.45 crore to set up a state-of-the-art cancer institute at Medicity in the Chak Gajaria Farm City in Lucknow.
As per the cabinet decision, the heritage hotels would get 100% exemption from entertainment tax for 10 years in rural areas and five years in urban areas. The exemption would be available from the day the hotels begins commercial operations or the day given by the applicant. The heritage hotel given exemption would be run for a minimum of 10 years in rural areas and five years in urban areas after the closing date of the exemption. In case of failure to run the heritage hotels for the specified period, the tax exemption amount would be recovered as land revenue with 18% annual interest.
HP India Sales Private Limited training centres would be set up for the youths of economically weaker sections in Lucknow, Gorakhpur, Agra and Kannauj. Over 5000 youths would get free training to enhance their employability skills. The training centres would also lead to development of the region where the centres are being set up.
FREE SOLAR LIGHTS FOR LOHIA VILLAGES
Free of cost solar streetlights will be provided under the Dr Ram Manohar Lohia Integrated Village Development Scheme. The state government was not able to get the central funding for the scheme in 2014-2015. Thus, the state cabinet decided to provide the central share as well now. In all, 18444 solar streetlights were set up in 1598 Lohia villages in 2012-2013. As many as 24,845 solar streetlights were set up in 2104 Lohia villages in 2013-2014.
APPOINTMENT FOR AGRA-LKO EXPRESSWAY
The state cabinet decided to appoint M/s Ayesha Engineering Architecture and RV Associates Engineers and Consultants Private Limited as the authority engineer to oversee implementation of the Agra-Lucknow (Greenfield) Expressway. The authority engineer would ensure uniformity and quality control in the implementation of five packages of the six-lane expressway being constructed under the Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) model with an estimated cost of Rs 15000 crore. The appointment of authority engineer would cost about Rs 91.50 crore. This cost would be met as the supervisory charges from a sum of Rs 279.26 crore earmarked for this purpose.
The under construction Mainpuri, Kannauj and Sonebhadra engineering colleges have been affiliated to the Uttar Pradesh Technical University from the academic session 2015-2016 onwards. The classes of the Mainpuri and Kannauj engineering colleges would be run at HBTI Kanpur while the classes of Sonebhadra engineering college would be run at KNIT, Sultanpur.
PCU NORMS RELAXED
Passenger Car Unit (PCU) nor ms relaxed to broaden and further strengthen the Allahabad-Gorakhpur highway (state highway number 7) from 11.650 km to 26.650 km. This is the main road for arrival of pilgrims for the Magh Mela, Ardh Kumbh and Kumbh Mela and to connect eastern UP with Chitrakoot. The state cabinet decided to relax the PCU norms set up by the Indian Road Congress for construction of 4-lane roads.