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‘Good governance has been a casualty in city’

There is no need to change the officials working in the Administration. What we need to ensure is that the current lot is diligent and works with us...

Written by Khushboo Sandhu | Chandigarh | Published: January 13, 2009 1:40:03 am

“There is no need to change the officials working in the Administration. What we need to ensure is that the current lot is diligent and works with us,” said Union Minister of State for Finance Pawan Kumar Bansal in an interview with Newsline on Monday.

In the run-up to the Lok Sabha elections,various political parties have accused the Chandigarh Territorial Congress Committee (CTCC) of not being able to work together with UT Administrator General S F Rodrigues (Retd) and officials of the Administration. Recently,senior Congress leaders had also demanded that a probe be marked into the various mega projects.

On this,Bansal said that “good governance has been a casualty” in the city. He added that in a democratic set-up,each one has a specific role to play and the role needs to be fulfilled.

He added that the facts pertaining to various deals that recently came to light are “startling” and that the Administration needs to think again about the various proposed mega projects.

“Acquiring land is not a sovereign,but a statutory right of the Administration. The land owners are being paid a pittance,while the Administration is selling them off at high prices. There was no need to subsidise the land for the IT Park,” said Bansal.

He further added,“The move was objectionable. The Administration deprived land owners while benefitting the IT sector which is one of the most highly paid sectors. Cross subsidisation should have been done.”

Bansal also argued that the price being paid for the acquisition of land should be similar to what is being paid in Punjab.

For Bansal,the developers had been “selling dreams to the people and the economic meltdown has spoiled their plans”.

“The Film City project would be a flop in the city. Rather locales for shooting could be developed,” said Bansal while adding that the proposed Terminal Market is not a good idea either.

“Instead fruit and vegetable malls with a large number of shops should be built,” said Bansal. While giving a thumbs-up to the Medicity and Theme Park,Bansal raised a question on the appropriateness of the revenue model being adopted.

“For some projects,land is being given on a 99-year lease. The revenue sharing in the Theme Park project is 1.1 per cent. The land should be sold outright if the correct price is being paid for it,” concluded Bansal.

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