SRDP: ₹100-cr. payments pending with GHMC

Work on multilevel flyover progressing at a snail’s pace at Biodiversity Park junction at Gachibowli.

Work on multilevel flyover progressing at a snail’s pace at Biodiversity Park junction at Gachibowli.   | Photo Credit: K.V.S. GIRI

Lack of funds delays payment of compensation for properties acquired

Several cheque payments with regard to acquisition of properties for the Strategic Road Development Plan (SRDP), a multi-crore project of the Telangana government for signal-free traffic management, have not been cleared by the GHMC for lack of funds.

According to sources, the civic body has kept pending the payment of compensation in lieu of property acquisition to the tune of ₹100 crore, for the last three months.

All the paper work has been completed, and cheques have been prepared waiting to be disbursed, a senior official informed. Majority of these properties are located near Uppal, Amberpet, L.B. Nagar, Sheikpet and Biodiversity Park junction at Gachibowli. A few are to be acquired near Lalapet too for road widening work. The properties can be vacated and demolition can be taken up only after the issuance of cheques, he said, indicating that the work pace too has been hit due to non-payment of compensation.

The slow progress of property acquisition continues to plague the ₹24,000-crore project, said to take forward the city’s infrastructure by a giant leap by 2024. It is a self-financed project being taken up by the GHMC relying on borrowings from external sources. A total of ₹1,000 crore was aimed to be generated through bond issue, based on the corporation’s creditworthiness. So far, the corporation has obtained ₹395 crore from two instances of bond issue, once for ₹200 crore and another time for ₹195 crore, both during the previous financial year.

Though the standing committee has cleared the proposal for a third tranche of funds to the tune of ₹305 crore through bond issue almost a month ago, the GHMC is yet to hit the stock market. Another proposal is to generate ₹2,500 crore for the project through rupee term loans, which too has been kept pending for quite some time now. The flagship project needs acquisition of about 1,500 properties at various locations, for construction of flyovers, underpasses and other structures, and it is expected to cost close to ₹1,000 crore. So far, about ₹250 crore has been paid for properties at various locations.

Officials from the Finance wing say that the bond issue may materialise in a month’s time. Though the proposal has been pending since January this year, nothing has been done till now, as the present interest rates could be a burden on the corporation, he said.

“If we pay compensation for properties from the general fund, we cannot replenish the same with SRDP-specific funds generated through bond issue. We can pay once the funds are here,” he said, while pegging the pending payments at ₹40-50 crore only.

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Printable version | Mar 31, 2020 5:04:28 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/srdp-100-cr-payments-pending-with-ghmc/article28336016.ece

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