Administration Times

“Progress on a Platter”

G Mathivathanan, Principal Secretary, Housing & Urban Development

The occasion was the 37th Foundation Day of the Bhubaneswar Development Authority (BDA. G Mathivathanan, secretary of the department of housing & urban development had a massive plan up his sleeve which was unveiled on the day. Projects with investments in upwards of Rs 500 crore were announced on the day.

Giving an honest and critical evaluation of the BDA, Principal Secretary of H&UD, G. Mathivathanan said the authority’s own regulations need to be looked into for certain cases. He is of the opinion that under the BDA’s current master plan a lot of land has been acquired by the organisation for future development, which, to be put simply, is “harassment of the general public.”

“Under the new Comprehensive Development Plan (CDP), we have proposed to acquire land for which we have immediate need. CDP will be implemented in accordance with the Chief Minister’s 5T plan. There will also be scope for development of slum-dwellers. BDA needs to speed up its works,” Mathivathanan commented.

Amongst the various plans under town district planning, Baramunda area will have a multi-facility bus terminal worth Rs 174.34 lakhs. Similary, Khurda will also have a multi-facility vegetable haat worth Rs 30.50 lakhs that will cater to about 498 shops.

Mathivathanan pointed out that the achievement under the existing CDP has not been much compared to what had been projected 10 years back. “Large patches of land reserved under the CDP remain unused,” he said and added that this time, the CDP will be more realistic and focus on what is doable in five years.

The H&UD secretary also announced that the existing housing regulations will be suitably amended in line with the amnesty scheme introduced last year.

“Our housing regulations are not realistic and force people to deviate and violate. Those need a relook and suitable amendment,” he said.

The government is planning to liberalise the regulations to allow people to construct within their own land.

The new regulations will encourage vertical constructions in which the Floor Area Ratio limit will be increased.

“It will not only help the public to follow the norms conveniently but also bring down the land cost which has become abnormally high,” he said.

He also said new housing projects will be taken up to provide affordable accommodation to citizens belonging to lower-income group.

The visionary and futuristic bureaucrat Mathivathanan has also taken up a strong stand in the realm of solid waste management (SWM). Six identified model cities and towns have been asked to be fully compliant by September 25, 2019 and other towns were asked to comply with all SWM guidelines by March 2020. The six urban centres – Bhubaneswar, Berhampur, Rourkela, Dhenkanal, Jajpur and Chhatrapur – have been identified as model cities.

Segregation of bio-degradable waste, composting process, disposal of dry waste, identification of bulk waste generators and awareness among the people and timeline for completion of different works are the other components of the guidelines. So around 1500 bulk waste generators have been identified and 447 Swachh Sathis engaged

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