The South Asian Times

19 September 2019 19:43 PM

6 cities, towns in UP to become 'model' by December (IANS Special)


Lucknow, July 18: Lucknow, Varanasi and Mathura will be developed as model cities by the end of December.

As per the directives of the National Green Tribunal (NGT), three smaller towns will also be developed on the same lines. These are Budhana in Muzaffarnagar, Dayalbagh in Agra and Orai in Jalaun.

Of these, Varanasi and Mathura already rate high in the state government's list of priorities for development while Lucknow and Varanasi are in the smart city list.

Principal Secretary Manoj Kumar Singh, in a circular, has directed that work in these cities and towns should begin form July 31 and be completed by December.

He said that in order to ensure cleanliness, door-to-door removal of garbage must be compulsorily implemented and land, if needed, should be acquired for disposal of garbage. The official said that wet and dry garbage should be separated before being dumped in landfill sites.

Till now, the door-to-door collection of garbage scheme has proved to be an utter failure after being outsourced. Delay in payments has made most of the agencies back off from the task.

In February, the NGT had said that dumping of sewage in water bodies is an offence. It had also slapped a penalty of Rs 25 lakh on the Uttar Pradesh government for its failure to stop discharge of dirty water into Upper Ganga canal.

A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel said adequate steps have not been taken for proper waste management and its treatment.

The green panel said that clean environment is a fundamental right and the apathy by the authorities has to be dealt with coercive action.

Despite the best efforts of the state government, Uttar Pradesh does not rank high on the cleanliness meter.

In the 2017 Swachh Sarvekshan findings, Uttar Pradesh got the (dis)credit of having the dirtiest city in the country - Gonda - which stood at 434th position on the cleanliness ranking.

Varanasi, Prime Minister Narendra Modi's constituency, ranked highest at rank 32 while Lucknow was at the 269 position. Mathura ranked at 352 and Gorakhpur, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath's constituency, ranked at 314.

State Minister for Urban Development Suresh Khanna said that the state would ensure completion of the six-city development before the December deadline.

"These three cities and three towns will witness all-round development - starting with garbage disposal, good roads, cleanliness, regular power supply, tree plantations, removal of encroachments and smooth flow of traffic. Various departments of the state government are already working on these issues and we only need to speed up the work and ensure a coordinated effort," he said.


Update: 18 July, 2019