Rs.114 cr approved for HRIDAY projects
By Bisheshwar Mishra / New Delhi
The Union Urban Development Ministry has chosen four most famous temple cities of Varanasi in UP, Amritsar in Punjab, Dwarka in Gujarat and Puri in Orissa to improve their infrastructure facilities, under the Heritage Infrastructure Development and Augmentation Yojana (HRIDAY). The approved project worth Rs 114 crore also includes the infrastructure development of Warangal Fort in Telangana state.
The Urban Development Minister Venkaiah Naidu has directed the officials of the Ministry and also the State Governments concerned to ensure speedy implementation of approved projects by March 2017. The secretary of the ministry Rajiv Gauba who chaired the inter-ministerial HRIDAY National Empowered Committee meeting yesterday, has cleared the project’s report of these five cities, sources said.
An investment of Rs.13.25 cr has been approved for Varanasi for ‘Developing a Heritage Walk around Kabir Chaura and Piplani Katra at a cost of Rs.2.50 cr and developing required infrastructure at 86 historical sites scattered across the city. Kabir Chaura is known as the home of renowned musicians like Kishan Maharaj, Gop Krishan, Samta Prasad and Rajan and Sajan Mishra brothers. Access roads and gallis leading to 86 heritage sites in the city will be improved at a cost of Rs.10.75 cr. Façade improvement, provision of on route amenities and signages, site development etc., will be undertaken. These heritage sites include temples, residences of famous personalities, kunds, parks and palaces.
For Amritsar, nine heritage infrastructure related projects have been approved for implementation with a total investment of Rs.57 cr. These include comprehensive road development and upgradation of 21 major roads leading to the Golden Temple to address congestion at a cost of Rs.21 cr, improving Maharaja Ranjit Singh Panorama with Rs.50 lakhs, revitalization of historical 40 ‘Khoo’ (Wells) by providing necessary infrastructure at a cost of Rs.5.00 cr, improving connectivity, street and landscape at Gol Bagh with Rs.5.00 cr, providing a mobility corridor along outer and inner circular roads at a cost of Rs.5.00 cr, providing interpretative signages with censors with Rs.5.35 cr, refitting and upgradation of colonial era building i.e Deputy Commissioner’s Office that was damaged in a fire at a cost of Rs.2.00 cr, development of an Environmental Park at UBDC canal with Rs.1.00 cr and development of public plaza along southern edge of Rambagh Garden with Rs.1.00 cr.
In Puri, five projects with an investment of about Rs.17.00 cr will be undertaken for revitalization of different heritage zones. These include, landscape development of Shri Jagannath Ballabh Temple at a cost of about Rs.9.00 cr, retrofitting of building facades along Parikrama Marg of the temple with Rs.3.00 cr, improvements at Bada Odiya Matha and Ganga Mata Matha at a cost of Rs.2.00 cr, landscape development along the River Front of Athanarla with Rs.2.00 cr and revival of seven Jagagharas and Ponds at a cost of over Rs.1.00 cr. there are 60 Jagagharas and Akharas in Puri which are over 400 year old and were centres of learning music and martial arts.
The Fort of Warangal in Telangana State will be revived and developed with necessary interventions with Rs.15.30 cr under HRIDAY. Access routes, pathways and entry points will be developed at a cost of Rs.4.17 cr, revival of water bodies and setting up of a sewage treatment plant would be undertaken at a cost of Rs.10.00 cr, public amenities at North Gate and Srungarapu Bavi (well) with Rs.2.15 cr, landscaping along access routes with Rs 0.80 cr and illumination of North Gate, access routes and other areas at a cost of Rs.0.60 cr.
In Dwaraka, Gujarat, Dwarakadhish Temple Square will be developed at a cost of Rs.2.75 cr by providing pedestrian pathway, surface improvement of roads, adding green elements, street furniture, lighting, signages, dustbins, space for vendors etc. The main Processional Street (Darshan Path) will be improve with Rs.7.25 cr by providing parking spaces, pedestrian pathway, public amenities block, repairing o0f Iskcon gate, lighting and signages etc.
HRIDAY is a Central Scheme for which Central Assistance of Rs.500 cr has been provisioned till March,2017. Twelve cities have been included in this mission. Other cities being Amaravati (Andhra Pradesh), Badami (Karnataka), Kanchipuram and Vellankini (Tamil Naidu), Ajmer (Rajasthan), Mathura (UP) and Gaya (Bihar).
City Hriday Plans of all the 12 Mission cities have been approved and Detailed Project Reports based on these plans costing over Rs.350 cr have so far been sanctioned for implementation. Remaining will soon be cleared.