Chief Minister Jayalalithaa will inaugurate urban common service centres at 10 places in Chennai.

Presenting the budget in the Assembly, Finance Minister O. Panneerselvam said the centres would provide a common platform to facilitate the remittance of various taxes and user charges like property tax, and electricity, sewage and water charges. These centres will also provide other public and e-services.

The number of centres in Chennai will be gradually increased to 200 and be extended to other Corporations, municipalities and town panchayats. These centres will be managed by the district e-governance societies under the overall control of the Information Technology Department.

“I expect that these institutional interventions will make a significant change in improving governance and public service delivery,” said Mr. Panneerselvam.

Projects at Rs. 2,000 crore

The work for phase-II of the Outer Ring Road will begin in March 2014 at a cost of Rs. 1,075 crore. Phase-I of the road project, implemented at a cost of Rs. 1,081.40 crore, will be put to public use shortly. As many as 17 projects including bridges, roads and railway overbridges in the Chennai metropolitan area will also be implemented at a cost of Rs. 2,000 crore with financial assistance from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). Chennai Peripheral Ring Road is another ambitious project that will be taken up with loan assistance from JICA.

“In pursuance of our commitment to establish a multi-modal transport system in Chennai, the mono rail project has been restructured to make it more viable. Rs. 200 crore has been provided for this purpose,” said Mr. Panneerselvam.

An integrated public bus information system, with a Global Positioning System (GPS)-enabled real time bus-tracking module, will also be implemented. Initially, 500 bus stops will be networked to establish a public information system on route maps, bus arrival details and other amenities. This will be extended to all bus stops in the city in a phased manner.

Also in the budget estimates 2014-2015, Rs. 500 crore has been allocated for the Chennai Mega City Development Mission and Rs. 750 crore for the Integrated Urban Development Mission.

Further, Tamil Nadu Transmission Corporation Limited is carrying out projects at a cost of Rs. 5,000 crore, with loan assistance of Rs. 3,572 crore from JICA in order to strengthen the transmission network, especially in Chennai, Mr. Panneerselvam said.