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Reddy assures attention to Mumbai's infrastructural lacunae

Written by: Staff

Mumbai, Apr 17 (UNI) Union Urban Development Minister Jaipal Reddy today assured rapt attention to rectify the infrastructural weaknesses in Mumbai and said the proposals of the city's civic body and Maharashtra Government would be sanctioned by year end.

The proposals include seeking central assistance for strengthening the sewage, drainage and drinking water supply systems.

During a luncheon meeting hosted by Petroleum Minister Murli Deora here, Mr Reddy, who is visiting the city for the first time as a Urban Development Minister, told mediapersons that the Centre will bear 35 per cent of expenditure incurred on implementing various projects under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM).

He said Rs 50,000 crore will be raised under the mission, to be spent over the next six years.

Mr Reddy said the proposals for storm water drainage, middle 'vaitarana' project for drinking water supply and sewage disposal project stage-II for Mumbai were significant and ''class neutral,'' and will be sanctioned by this year end. ''Uurbanisation is not a curse but a wave that is inevitable and desirable,'' he mentioned.

''We should prepare ourselves for the future wave. As of now, 42 per cent people live in urban areas in Maharashtra and by 2020, 50 per cent of the country's population will live in urban areas,'' he said.

Mumbai's infrastructural weaknesses need to be attended and even though urban development is a state subject, the Centre will do its best to ensure maximum possible funds for Maharashtra, and Mumbai in particular.

''Money could not be sanctioned in the last financial year for technical reasons. The mission was sanctioned in December and there were only three months. We could not take up projects worth more than Rs 100 crore,'' he added.

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