Chandigarh administrator’s advisory council to meet on Feb 10
The Chandigarh administrator’s advisory council is set to meet on February 10.
Progress on the city’s second medical college, controversial Tribune flyover, reduction in collector rates, change of land use policy, new route to the international airport and options for mass rapid transit system (MRTS) will be on top of its agenda.
It has been more than a year and a half since the council met after its reconstitution in August 2019. The administration had planned a meeting in April first week last year, but it had to be cancelled due to the Covid-19 lockdown. Several key issues have been hanging fire because of the delay.
The council is responsible for advising the administration on development issues and policy matters affecting the city. In addition to all senior UT officials, it includes current and former members of parliament, mayor, resident and business association representatives and other prominent citizens. It also has 10 standing committees, which are subject-matter-related groups headed by a chairman.
Confirming the development, UT adviser Manoj Parida said: “The council will take up the agenda approved by the UT administrator. Its sub-committees will make presentations on different issues, such as Tribune flyover, new route from Chandigarh to the international airport, change of land use, second medical college, MRTS, and law and order.”
The long-standing demand of realtors for a cut in collector rates will be taken up by the council. The cut is intended to rationalise prices, especially of commercial properties. It will also make the administration’s property auctions more attractive. The market price of industrial plots and commercial properties in some areas is less than the collector rates.
The much-hyped Tribune flyover is likely to be discussed in the meeting. The UT adviser’s report on the project and its alternative will be part of the agenda, said a senior official. The administration has rejected all alternatives suggested by different experts.
The administration has also submitted its proposal for setting up a medical college at Government Multi Specialty Hospital, Sector 16. The council will be made abreast about the scope and progress of the project.
Reintroduction of the Apartment Act in the city is also likely to be put before council members for discussion. Facing housing shortage and expensive real estate, a section of people has demanded that the Act be reintroduced. It allows bifurcation of big plots, which is in the interest of owners of kanal houses in the city.
Another contentious issue – allowing change of land use for opening of nursing homes on residential plots – will be tabled. The sub-committee on urban planning has already rejected the proposal, which was initially pushed by MP Kirron Kher.
After the Centre and Punjab government rejected the administration’s proposal for an underpass for giving the city a shorter and direct route to the airport, the proposal is likely to be taken up by the council.
It is also likely to brainstorm on the long-pending MRTS project, which has failed to take off because of lack of consensus on different options and lack of funding. After plans for Metro and Skybus were shelved, the UT administration last year pitched for Metrolite to solve traffic congestion and parking problems. No headway could be made due to the pandemic. Metrolite is an urban rail transit system on the pattern of Metro, but much smaller in size and cost.
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