- Hari Singh Rathore, Municipal Commissioner, Jodhpur Nagar Nigam
Jodhpur is the second biggest city in Rajasthan. In the belief that no development can take place without the support of its people, the municipal corporation of this tourist city has sought the active involvement of its residents in overall development, while its own mandate includes services such as cleanliness, street lighting and sanitation and sectors such as housing. AHLAM RAIS speaks to Hari Singh Rathore, Municipal Commissioner, Jodhpur Nagar Nigam, on ongoing projects and his dream for this vibrant city.
What has been your value addition to the city´s existing facilities?
The main function of a corporation is to provide cleanliness. When I joined the corporation, there was an urgent requirement to clean the city. Hence, under my supervision, we initiated a cleanliness drive. The drive was inspired by Actor Aamir Khan´s show Satyamev Jayate, which focused on segregating solid and liquid waste for efficient waste management. Hence, on August 15, 2014, the corporation along with the support of Aamir Khan and his entire team carried out the cleanliness drive to initiate and maintain effective waste management. For this purpose, green and red dustbins are provided to residents so they can segregate waste. The fresh waste is given to cattle while the remaining waste is composted. This programme is currently being carried out on a trial basis and a detailed project report (DPR) is in progress.
Please tell us more about other ongoing and upcoming projects in the city.
We have undertaken purification of the Jojari River, where polluted water from factories gets mixed with clean water. To maintain cleanliness, we plan to install four water treatment plants. The cost of this projects is Rs 800 crore and a Detailed Project Report (DPR) has been prepared. Once we receive permission from the High Court, tenders will be floated. With regard to drainage and sewerage, we have a Rs 70-crore drainage project at Airport Road and another at a cost of about Rs 150 crore. Construction of a sewerage treatment plant is in progress and we are planning to construct an additional one. The cost for the upcoming plant is about Rs 50 crore and tenders will be floated soon. Also, for BRTS, we have 39 buses but they are not working properly. Hence, we intend to float tenders for the same but the cost has not yet been decided.
As Jodhpur is a tourist location, what measures has the corporation taken to boost tourism?
Our motto for the city is ¨Swachh Jodhpur, Harit Jodhpur, Sundar Jodhpur¨. The corporation plans to focus on cleanliness, greenery and the beautification of heritage structures. We have many old heritage structures in the city; we intend to renovate and revamp them. To attract tourists, we have also refurnished the Clock Tower area, which was shut for a long time, and started boating facilities at Gulab Sagar.
Please elaborate upon the city plan that the corporation intends to create for the future.
We are looking to build a convenient city for the next 50 years. For this, we are planning to undertake various projects, one of which is the solid and liquid waste management project. Apart from this, we are working towards constructing about 15 km of new roads. Jodhpur´s EM Road is being used as a model to build all future road projects. The pathways situated beside the roads will comprise all pipelines to eliminate any need to dig the roads for future requirements. The roads will be constructed in agreement with all relevant stakeholders such as the PHED, electricity, PWD and Municipality Corporation. Jodhpur Development Authority (JDA) is undertaking the construction of these roads and they are at the DPR stage. We are also in the process of creating a DPR to make Jodhpur a solar city with the support from Ministry of New & Renewable Energy, Government of India. Through this project, we aim to cut the power demand of the city by 10 per cent in the next five years by generating power through non-conventional sources. We will install solar panels on all government buildings and then motivate private buildings to do the same. For this, we will also obtain subsidy from the Government.
What is the budgeted support you receive from the state government? Which areas would you list as hot spots of growth within the city?
We have an annual budget of around Rs 500 crore; this stands at a 50:50 ratio from the state government and corporation. Jodhpur is witnessing tremendous growth in the real-estate sector and many big developers are entering the market from Pune, Mumbai and Gujarat. Palli Road and Barmer Road are currently the hot spots for real-estate development.
Jodhpur Nagar Nigam
Year of establishment: 1991
Total city area: 75 sq km
Annual budget: `500 crore (Approx)
Current city population: About 15 lakh
Municipal councillors: 65