The Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation's grandiose plan to deck up the city for the prestigious Conference of Parties (COP) for the Convention of Biological Diversity (CBD) in October is as good as shelved.
Hopes of getting substantial funds from the Central government for the biggest-ever international meet to be hosted by the country have evaporated. With no positive indication coming from New Delhi about any form of grant coming the State way, senior officials have begun to water down proposals.
With more than 15,000 delegates expected from 190 countries for the meet to be held at the international convention centre at Madhapur, the municipal corporation along with other government departments wanted to completely spruce up roads, footpaths, signage, drains, etc., over a 125 km stretch of roads.
These roads were either leading to the venue, hotels, places of historic importance and so on. Even corporate bodies were sought to be involved in the exercise but after initial flurry of activity, stark reality has brought the civic body to the ground.
GHMC had sought Rs.1,000 crore from the Centre and Rs.200 crore from the State for the summit. “We were expecting at least part of the funds sought but it looks like nothing is going to come our way,” shrugged senior officials, disappointed.
In a recent meeting with Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy, Rs.150 crore was sought with the reasoning that Rs.100 crore would be chipped in by the municipal body. Senior officials are now not sure whether the government would loosen its purse strings.
“In any case we are already late and once the monsoon sets in there is little work we can do on the roads,” they pointed out.
A drastically revised schedule of works for COP show that 21 road stretches are to be improved for carpeting, drains and footpaths for an amount of little over Rs.53 crore spread over three phases (see graphic).
Pertinent to note that the same municipal corporation was in the forefront when the National Games, Afro-Asian Games and Congress Plenary session were successfully held albeit with generous the government support.
Keywords: Convention of Biological Diversity