Urban renewal plan a huge hit with Maha, Gujarat, AP

Written by Kakoly Chatterjee | New Delhi, Aug 27 | Updated: Aug 28 2008, 06:42am hrs
States like Maharashtra, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka are trying to obtain maximum benefits of Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM). This is a scheme that the government took up three years ago to build infrastructure of the existing and newly developed cities to keep pace with the pressure of the burgeoning population.

Maharashtra has the highest number of projects approved followed by Gujarat, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh. Normally the sanctioned fund reaches the projects in four installments. A committee consisting of representatives from ministries, which include environment, finance, housing and urban poverty alleviation and members from the planning commission, clear the projects before the finance ministry sanction funds. Essential urban services come under this scheme. It includes water supply, sewerage and sanitation, solid waste management, conservation of water bodies, drainage, roads, urban transport systems (public transport systems), urban renewal and heritage conversation.

With 58 of its projects approved the total money committed to its project is Rs 5,393 crore. Out of this Rs 1,040 crore has been released so far. With 56 projects approved Gujarat has the second largest number of projects in its kitty. For this western state the total funds sanctioned is Rs 1,636 crore while the amount released till date is Rs 503 crore.

The third biggest beneficiary of JNNURM is Karnataka: 42 of its projects worth Rs 1,272 crore have been approved. The amount released so far is Rs 291 crore. Andhra Pradesh is running fourth with 39 projects in its kitty. The total number of projects approved is 39 and the total amount committed is Rs 1,565 crore. So far Rs 291 crore has been released.

M Ramachandran, secretary, ministry of urban development, told FE, We make a monthly review of all ongoing projects under JNNURM. He added, Around 58% of the total amount sanctioned so far has been released till the end of July.

Ten projects have been completed under the JNNURM scheme so far. These schemes are spread across the three states of Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka. Cities directly impacted after completion of this scheme include Bangalore, Surat and Ahmedabad which had improved water supply, sewerage and roads.

States that are on the other end of the spectrum include Tripura, Goa and Jharkand. While the first two have no projects in their kitty the thirds project got cancelled because it asked for an amount which exceeded its allocated amount. Jharkand is allowed Rs 40 crore while it submitted a project worth Rs 300 crore. Planning Commission has earmarked a certain amount for each state based mainly on population. A total of 333 projects worth Rs 15,015 crore have been approved till date under the JNNURM scheme.