CM Siddaramaiah meets Gadkari, wants pending Karnataka projects cleared 

The CM alleged that Karnataka faced a loss in the allocation of funds by the 15th Finance Commission as it was done based on the 2011 census.
CM Siddaramaiah submits a list of the state’s demands to Union Surface Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari in New Delhi on Friday. DyCM DK Shivakumar, PWD Minister Satish Jarkiholi and Home Minister Dr G Parameshwara look on.
CM Siddaramaiah submits a list of the state’s demands to Union Surface Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari in New Delhi on Friday. DyCM DK Shivakumar, PWD Minister Satish Jarkiholi and Home Minister Dr G Parameshwara look on.

BENGALURU: Chief Minister Siddaramaiah met Union Surface Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari in New Delhi on Friday and requested that his ministry clear the pending projects in Karnataka, including notifying 5,225 km of 39 roads as National Highways. The process of declaring these roads as NHs has been stalled despite getting in-principle approval, the CM said after leading a delegation to Gadkari. 

Siddaramaiah urged Gadkari that the 90-km road connecting Mysuru via Mananthavady, HD Kote, and Jayapura to Kalpetta in Kerala, which has already received in-principle approval, be implemented. The CM asked Gadkari to ensure better connectivity to Mangaluru Port by constructing a tunnel between Maranahalli and Addahole in the Shiradi Ghat.

The other proposals submitted to the Centre include upgrading those state highways with vehicular traffic of 10,000 PCU (passenger car unit), a cable car facility at Gokak waterfalls, and many other projects.

Siddaramaiah expressed his gratitude to Gadkari for the approval of the development of the Belagavi-Hunagunda-Raichur highway (NH748A), the Bengaluru-Chennai Expressway, the Surat-Chennai Express Highway, the Bengaluru Suburban Ring Road, and greenfield corridors in Karnataka.

Meanwhile, the CM discussed water projects and matters related to tax devolution at a meeting with the MPs elected from Karnataka.

Speaking to reporters in New Delhi on Friday, Siddaramaiah, who met the state MPs on Thursday, said that he had discussed key drinking water projects like the Mekedatu Balancing Reservoir project, Kalasa-Banduri project, and Upper Bhadra project, as the clearance for these projects by the Centre has been stalled at various levels.

The CM alleged that Karnataka faced a loss in the allocation of funds by the 15th Finance Commission as it was done based on the 2011 census, whereas the commissions in the past considered the 1971 census. He hoped that the state MPs would ensure that the 16th Finance Commission would set right the alleged injustice. 

As many as 52 projects worth Rs 659 crore were submitted to the Ministry of Minority Affairs, which includes 32 residential schools, 11 hostels, four day schools, and four skill centres. “Twelve of these projects have been approved but the funds are yet to be released. The remaining 40 projects are still pending,” the chief minister said.

During the meeting, they discussed various proposals, including speedy approval of Rs. 15,611 crore for Namma Metro Phase III, a special grant of Rs 11,495 crore, sea plane projects at Malpe, Byandoor, and Mangaluru under the Udaan scheme, Rs 250 crore for Bengaluru for flood relief as recommended by the 15th Finance Commission, and Rs.2,580 crore for the conversion of a 30km road in Shiradi Ghat into a two-lane road.

The meeting also decided to reject the Kasturirangan report on the protection and preservation of the Western Ghats. 

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