ADB abandons Greater Baramulla project, cites delay in master plan
The Greater Baramulla project aimed at facelift of the town and ensuring better civic facilities has not been approved by Asian Development Bank, citing administration's failure to prepare master plan well in time and constraint of time in executing the project.
The project had remained a major attraction for all the political parties, especially Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) which in past had tried to take credit for the plan but failed to ensure its implementation.
The Asian Development Bank (ADB)-assisted Rs 176 crore Greater Baramulla project was to be executed by the Economic Reconstruction Agency (ERA).
The salient features of the project were scientific solid waste management, better drainage and sewerage system, beautification of river bank and connecting Eco-park via cable car with the scenic Bosian heights. The aim of the project was also to increase the limits of the town.
President Beopar Mandal Baramulla, Ishfaq Ahmad Qazi, said the project has been shelved due to the non-seriousness of the authorities.
"All the development programs in Baramulla town had been earlier kept hostage to Greater Baramulla project. Now as the program has been abandoned means the town won't be developed on modern lines as promised by successive regimes".
Several members of civil society Baramulla had constituted different fora to work for the speedy implementation of much hyped project. However, abandonment of this project has dashed their hopes. "We have been fooled by both political parties and the administration. The move will shatter people's faith in claims of different political parties," said a member of the civil society.
Director Economic Reconstruction Agency Kashmir, Malik Basharat, while commenting on the development said, "The Asian Development Bank in its statement has said that the project has not been approved due to the fact that the authorities had failed to submit their master plan well in time and the time for the loan to be approved has remained too little with the result the project cannot be approved."