Tribune News Service
New Delhi, April 7
Imposition of ‘odd-even’ car-rationing scheme in Delhi is a “consequence” of unsustainable urban development practices followed over the years.
This was stated by Union Minister M Venkaiah Naidu today while asking all stakeholders to draw lessons from it.
He said haphazard urban expansion over the years led to distortions like lack of access to urban spaces, severe infrastructure deficit, poor quality of life and unsustainable urban development. These deficiencies were being addressed under the new schemes launched by the government.
Addressing mayors, chairpersons, municipal commissioners and officials from 62 cities and towns from 22 states at the National Workshop on Sanitation organised by the Ministry of Urban Development, Naidu urged the elected chiefs of urban local bodies to work with people for behavioral changes and increased use of toilets.
The second phase of the odd-even car-rationing scheme is set to start here from April 15.
Welcoming the initiative of 18 states which have come forward to make 400 cities open defecation-free (ODF) by the year end, Naidu asked why only these states were in the forefront in this regard.
He said Gujarat had volunteered to make 79 cities ODF, followed by Madhya Pradesh (68), Andhra Pradesh (66), Maharashtra (60), Rajasthan (33), Chhattisgarh (32) and Telangana (14).
Other states which will make less than 10 cities ODF include West Bengal, Haryana, Bihar, Tamil Nadu, Punjab, Jharkhand and Uttarakhand. Two cities of Puducherry will also be ODF by the year end, besides Shimla and New Delhi municipal council areas.
He said there was no place for politics when it came to development.
He said the Urban Development Ministry had given full freedom to urban local bodies and states in formulation, appraisal and approval of projects, “unlike in the past when every project was appraised and approved in Delhi.”
Sunita Narain, Director of Delhi-based Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), said, “Swachh Bharat Mission is a welcome initiative as it is based on a holistic approach to sanitation.”
(with inputs from PTI)
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