Govt rushing Central Vista project: Cong
The Congress on Friday accused the government of fast-tracking the ~20,000 crore Central Vista Redevelopment Project in New Delhi to avoid the Supreme Court’s scrutiny while urging it to scrap the ambitious plan or keep it last on its priority list given the Covid-19 crisis.
“At this stage, when the future in terms of economic recovery and activity looks bleak, the government should have shown magnanimity and guts to announce scrapping of this project,” Congress spokesman Abhishek Manu Singhvi said. Singhvi urged the Supreme Court to give precedence to petitions against the project.
The Supreme Court on Thursday declined to stay the project for the time being, saying there is no pressing urgency for granting one because the country is in a state of lockdown to check the spread of Covid-19.
The redevelopment plan includes a Parliament building, and a common secretariat for central government offices.
Congress president Sonia Gandhi last month wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi urging him to suspend the project and utilise the money allocated for it for constructing new hospital infrastructure along with equipping frontline workers with personal protection equipment and better facilities.
Singhvi called the project somebody’s hobby horse. “It is not only for a Modi Mahal, which includes a new prime minister’s house, it is the intention to leave somehow in a personal manner, your own stamp by littering the whole of green verdant landscape of Rajpath with new buildings in name of convenience and modernisation. A more horrible attack on the heart and psyche of Delhi cannot be imagined.”
He said when the nation is fighting the coronavirus, it is quite astonishing that the government is holding meetings on the project. “It just shows the warped, distorted, completely absurd priorities of this government. Bang in the middle of coronavirus crisis, they are fast-tracking, hot-footing this project,” Singhvi said.