Special Correspondent

Authorities concerned to be held responsible for delay in implementing projects under JNNURM

MYSORE: Peeved over the delay and apathy in implementing infrastructure projects sanctioned under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM), a citizens’ forum has threatened to explore legal options to make officials more accountable to the public.

The Association of Concerned and Informed Citizens of Mysore (ACICM) is contemplating on moving the court in a bid to hold local officials responsible for the present state of affairs pertaining to the projects.

M. Lakshman, convenor of the association, on Sunday, said that Mysore was fortunate to have been identified for development projects under JNNURM but the officials had let go of the opportunity to get adequate grants. The ACICM also took exception to the proposed move to hand over the remodelling of drinking water distribution system project to the Mysore Urban Development Authority (MUDA). The project is to be implemented by the Karnataka Urban Water Supply and Drainage Board (KUWSDB) and a MoU has been signed by the local authorities with the JNNURM agencies.

Mr. Lakshman said that technical experts and engineers strongly felt that the KUWSDB was the ideal agency to implement a project of such importance as it was highly technical and complicated in nature and also required engineering expertise. The main grouse of the ACICM was that an important project which had a bearing on lakhs of people was being handed over to an agency which had no experience in implementing such works. “Let alone drinking water project, The MUDA has even failed to create adequate layouts and sites for the people of Mysore,” said Mr. Lakshman.The remodelling of drinking water distribution system entails construction of new overhead tanks, reservoirs and laying of fresh pipelines among others. The KUWSDB had already invited tenders and if there is a change in the implementing agency at this juncture, the JNNURM authorities may take objection and the project will get delayed, said the citizens forum.

He said the ACICM would urge the district in-charge Minister Shobha Karandlaje not to change the project implementing agency.

The ACICM said upgrading 20 slums was among the first projects cleared for Mysore under the JNNURM for which Rs. 45 crore had been released. However, it charged that there was nothing by way of development to show that the project had been implemented. Ms. Karandlaje’s attention was also drawn to the delay in clearing the Bus Rapid Transit System (BRTS) project.

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