Staff Correspondent

It has gone in favour of Belur-Halebid Belur-Halebid in Hassan district was supposed to benefit from the scheme

  • Jayakumar says he is at a loss to understand the reason for the change in decision
  • The Centre has not rejected Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission project for Mysore, he says

    MYSORE: Mysore city has lost the Rs. 50-crore tourism development grant of the Union Government to Belur-Halebid in Hassan district, district Minister-in-charge D.T. Jayakumar has said.

    During his tenure as Tourism Minister in the erstwhile Dharam Singh Government, Mr. Jayakumar had recommended Mysore for the Rs. 50-crore grant from the Union Tourism Ministry, which is sanctioned to only one destination in each State.

    At a press conference here on Tuesday, he said that he had recently learnt that the Union Government had sanctioned the scheme for Belur-Halebid. He said he was at a loss to understand the reasons behind the change in decision. "I do not know who has played politics," he said.

    Mr. Jayakumar replied in the negative when asked whether the senior leadership of Janata Dal (Secular) could be held responsible for the sudden change in decision as Hassan district happened to be the former Prime Minister H. D. Deve Gowda's Lok Sabha constituency. Mr. Jayakumar's observation is likely to spark speculations for, Mysore district also happens to be the home of Gowda's bete-noire and former Deputy Chief Minister Siddaramaiah.

    To a question, Mr. Jayakumar clarified that the Centre had not rejected the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) project for Mysore. It had only sought certain clarifications, he said.

    The Government would not allow Mysore to lose the project, he said.

    Mr. Jayakumar warned the Sugarcane Growers Association of Mysore and Chamarajnagar districts that law would take its course if they went ahead with the threat to disrupt the Independence Day celebrations on August 15.

    Although they had a right to protest in support of their demands, their threatening to stall the Independence Day celebrations was tantamount to showing disrespect, he said.

    Mr. Jayakumar said he had convened a meeting of representatives of sugarcane farmers from Mysore and Chamarajanagar district and the management of Bannari Amman Sugar factory, which purchased sugarcane from the two districts.

    "The farmers were demanding Rs. 1,500 a tonne. The price was fixed at Rs 1,050 per tonne, but the farmers rejected it. The Government later fixed the price at Rs 1,100, which was also rejected by them," he said.