Infrastructure News

Rs 18 lakh cr spent since 2014 for transforming cities, towns: Minister, ET Infra


<p>"The government has disbursed funds directly to state governments to undertake urban planning reforms."</p>
“The government has disbursed funds directly to state governments to undertake urban planning reforms.”

“It is not enough to think in terms of traditional infrastructure creation. That was a thing of the past. Instead, let us look to the future and focus on creating a holistic ecosystem for ensuring last-mile access to services, enhanced operational efficiencies, and integration of digital technology.”

This was stated by Hardeep S Puri, Minister of Housing & Urban Affairs and Petroleum & Natural Gas, in his address at the National Workshop on Capacity Building of Urban Local Bodies.

“To achieve these outcomes, we need to increase our capabilities – individually, organisationally, and institutionally. That is the aim of this workshop,” the Union Minister said.

Highlighting the purpose of the Capacity Building Workshop, Puri said that through this workshop, we aim to cultivate a unified approach towards capacity building for all the Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) across the country.

“Urban Development had faced neglect as only Rs. 1.78 lakh crores were invested in urban areas between 2004 to 2014. In comparison, more than Rs. 18 lakh crores has been invested since 2014 in the transformation of our cities and towns,” Puri said.

“While the 13th Finance Commission granted Rs. 23,111 crores to ULBs between the period 2010-11 to 2014-2015; under the 15th Finance Commission, there has been a six-fold increase to Rs. 1,55,628 crores between 2021-22 to 2025-2026,” he added.

The Minister said that through the AMRUT mission, the government has pressed for cities to go to the markets to raise capital investment. Twelve cities have raised more than Rs. 4,384 crores through municipal bonds. Such actions have increased ULB creditworthiness and made them attractive investment destinations, he said.

Speaking on the emphasis being laid on the reforms in urban planning, Hardeep Singh Puri said that the government has disbursed funds directly to state governments to undertake urban planning reforms.

“Reforms such as modernisation of building bye laws; transit-oriented development; adoption of Transferable Development Rights; integration of blue and green infrastructure through nature-based solutions; affordable Housing through in-situ rehabilitation; increased capacity building and recruitment; GIS-based master planning; and Online Building Permission Systems (OBPS) have been prioritised,” he said.

The event was attended by more than 250 officials including Municipal Commissioners and senior officials from Urban Local Bodies, State Government, knowledge and industry partners, faculty from Training Institutes, and officials of MoHUA and CBC. The workshop witnessed productive interaction and discussions underscoring the significance of continuous improvements and introducing new skills within ULBs.

  • Published On Oct 6, 2023 at 02:42 PM IST

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