Centre has released ₹500 crore for 3 smart cities of state, says Navjot Sidhu

₹200 crore will be for Ludhiana, ₹150 crore will be for Amritsar and Jalandhar each.

punjab Updated: Jan 07, 2018 11:57 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Amritsar
Urban Development Ministry,Navjot Sidhu,SAD-BJP government
Punjab minister Navjot Singh Sidhu at a press conference in Amritsar on Saturday. (Sameer Sehgal/HT)

After about two-and-a-half years of the Urban Development Ministry of Government of India (GOI) unveiling a list of 98 cities under its Smart City Mission, the department has finally released ₹500 crore for Amritsar, Ludhiana and Jalandhar, announced local bodies minister Navjot Singh Sidhu here on Saturday at a press conference.

Sidhu was accompanied by undersecretary of urban development department Dr Sameer Sharma and other senior officers of the Centre and the state government.

Sidhu said that earlier there were no hopes of development under the mission but the state’s Congress government took special initiative and released ₹50 crore for the cities. “Seeing our initiative, the Centre released ₹ 500 crore forthwith,” he said.

Lashing out at the SAD-BJP government, he said that they did not take any step for receiving grant from the Centre. “Out of ₹500 crore, ₹200 crore will be for Ludhiana, ₹150 crore will be for Amritsar and Jalandhar each, ”Sidhu said.

State to get ₹7,000-crore loan from ADB

Sidhu said, “We are preparing a special programme for taking loan of ₹7,000 crore from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) for complete sewage system and its rehabilitation, stormed water sewerage system and water supply in all cities of the state.” He said the Centre had promised him to provide loan from the bank.

He said, “The loan that the state government takes in India has 8% interest rate but ADB gives loan on 2% interest only. If we get loan from the bank, it will be like nectar for the state.”

NEERI technology for waste water treatment

Sidhu said that all rainy drains of the state will be taken care of by the National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI). He said water of the drains is getting polluted with sewerage water and industrial waste. “We have decided to hire NEERI technology and a special meeting with the company’s authorities will be conducted soon,” he said.

Sidhu said, “Our parks are lungs of the city and we will develop all parks of the city. The construction work of all six main bridges; SSSS chowk, 22 Number Fatak, Jaura Fatak, Putali Ghar and Walla bridge will be constructed by the RITES company. The same company will also construct, beautify and maintain sports park in 34-acre at Ranjit Avenue.”

First Published: Jan 07, 2018 11:34 IST