PG Ramesh, Commissioner, Mysore City Corporation, Mysore
A heritage city, Mysore is the cultural capital of Karnataka. The Mysore Municipal Commissioner´s office looks after various responsibilites such as planning for the development of the city, infrastructure facilities, water supply, sewage treatment, garbage treatment, maintenance of street lights, and so on. PG Ramesh, Commissioner, Mysore City Corporation, Mysore, speaks to AHLAM RAIS on the latest developments in the city.
How would you describe Mysore when you stepped in as the municipal commissioner? What has been your value addition to the city´s existing development?
When I stepped in, many projects were yet to take off. I have been instrumental in the completion of nine zero-waste management plants, tendered a 5-tonne capacity biogas plant and have undertaken energy saving measures in sewage treatment plants. I am implementing the solar city project and involved in the preparation of detailed project report (DPR) for underground drainage facilities for Mysore and for renovation of heritage buildings.
With the city being identified for the development of a solar city by the Union Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, what measures are you taking?
Under the solar city project, we have about five projects:
The installation of solar energy panels with a capacity of 8 kW in Kuppanna Park, 8 kW in Cheluvamba Park; 45 kW on rooftops of all 9 zonal offices; 60 kW on the rooftops of the MUDA (Mysore Urban Development Authority) building; and 75 kW on the roof of the Mysore City Corporation.
What is the status of these projects? By when are the tenders expected to be floated?
Work on the 8-kW project in Kuppanna Park is complete and expected to be inaugurated soon. The 8-kW project in Cheluvamba Park is at the tendering stage. Both projects cost about Rs 40 lakh and we have received a subsidy of about 30 per cent for these from the Central Government.
Is the corporation planning to undertake any new road projects in the city? What is the expected cost of these?
We are currently undertaking various road projects in different parts of the city such as Irwin Road, Vivekananda Nagar, Nimishamba layout and Ramakrishna Nagar. We are also undertaking road projects in some remote areas and upgrading existing roads. For these projects, tenders will be floated soon and the cost will run into lakhs. However, the widening of Irwin Road is expected to cost about Rs 24 crore, of which Rs 14 crore has been reserved for land acquisition and Rs 10 crore has been earmarked for widening.
Highlight the landmark and ongoing projects that have changed the face of the city.
We are implementing the 5-km Raja Marga stretch from Hardinge Circle to Millennium Circle. Also, we have rennovated the Dufferin Clock Tower near Devaraja Market to enhance the beauty of the city. Besides, we are renovating the Lansdowne Building.
What are the measures undertaken by the corporation for drainage, sewerage and street lighting?
We have prepared a project report for an underground drainage (UGD) system; this has been approved by the Government of India and about Rs 408.5 crore has been sanctioned for it. Drains have already been constructed in Bannimantap and Hebbal valleys; however, construction of drains in the other four valleys needs to be addressed and is still pending with the Centre. For street lighting, we will float tenders shortly. The cost of these tenders is expected to be about Rs 4-5 crore.
Are there any JNNURM-funded projects in the city? If yes, kindly name the projects and mention the investment involved.
There are a few JNNURM projects carried out under various departments: Integrated solid waste management, remodelling of storm water drains, development of heritage core and urban renewal, building houses for economically weaker sections and providing 24-hour water supply. In terms of investment, the solid waste management projects cost about Rs 29.85 crore; remodelling of drains is about Rs 125 crore; development of heritage structures is about Rs 39.45 crore; building houses for economically weaker sections is about Rs 52.35 crore; and water supply is about Rs 198 crore.
What is the budgeted support you receive?
Our annual budget is Rs 800 crore. The state government offers State Finance Commission (SFC) grants of about Rs 29-30 crore every year. We also receive a number of other grants from the state government such as Nagarothana grant worth Rs 100 crore. From the Central Government, we receive 13th Finance Commission grants; it provides about Rs 8 crore for infrastructure development, Rs 9 crore as performance grant and about Rs 7.5 crore for roads and bridges.
What impact has infrastructure development had on the city´s real-estate development? What are the hot spots within the city in terms of growth?
Real estate in Mysore is growing rapidly owing to which apartments and new layouts are being developed. Better infrastructure facilities such as water supply and roads have led to a demand in real estate within the city. In terms of hot spots, places such as Kuvempnagar, Vijayanagar and Ramakrishna Nagar are potential areas of growth.
Mysore City Corporation
Year of establishment: 1977
Total city area: About 128.52 sq km
Current city population:
About 10 lakh (As per 2011
Annual civil budget: Rs.800 crore
Municipal councillors: 65