Six years on, DC office complex project at Padil remains incomplete

Published - February 13, 2024 08:30 pm IST - MANGALURU

With the current financial year coming to a close next month and Chief Minister Siddaramaiah set to present the 2024-25 Budget on Friday, the announcement in the 2023-24 Budget that the district office complex being constructed in Dakshina Kannada (at Padil in Mangaluru) will be completed in the current fiscal remains on paper.

Also called the DC office complex project, it is the initiative of the Congress government (2013-2018). The project began on February 9, 2018.

After the collapse of the subsequent Congress-Janata Dal (Secular) coalition government and the BJP forming the government in 2019, the project was in limbo. The Congress revived it last year after forming the government again. Mr. Siddaramaiah’s announcement that the project will be over by March, 2024, is yet to become a reality.

Revenue Minister Krishna Byre Gowda who inspected the project in last August went on record that the existing Deputy Commissioner’s office will be shifted to Padil within a year. According to the Minister, ₹55 crore has been spent on the project which has been 75% completed.

When the project was conceived, it was proposed to have offices of over 30 departments in the G + three building coming up on 2.26 lakh square feet area.

The overall project coming up on 5.89 acres had witnessed stiff opposition from green activists for transferring the land from Karnataka State Forest Industries Development Corporation Limited (KSFIC) to the Revenue Department for the project. The matter even went to the National Green Tribunal which initially issued a stay order and later vacated its stay by dismissing a petition on December 20, 2017. Later, the Forest Department felled over 600 trees for the project.

Another major announcement by the Chief Minister in the 2023-24 Budget on setting up a coastal beach tourism task force for the development of coastal tourism in Dakshina Kannada, Udupi, and Uttara Kannada districts is also on the paper.

In his Budget speech, the Chief Minister said that a detailed plan will be prepared for the comprehensive development of the coast. To develop the Sasihithlu beach in Mangaluru as an international surfing destination, a programme will be formulated under the public-private partnership (PPP).

Sources in the tourism industry said that no progress has been made on the same.

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