Hyderabad: The city of Hyderabad, which boasts of a rich history, heritage and lineage of over 400 years, is known for its secularism and cosmopolitan culture, apart from being a crucible of several social streams. It is the centre of Telangana’s socio-political and economic development.
Known for its excellent climatic conditions, the State capital is rated as one of the most livable cities in the world. It is the centre for the world’s largest education and research institutions, hub for pharma and hospital industry and favourite tourism destination. It is also known for its Information Technology Corridor and is fast growing as a Smart city. Hyderabad is regarded as the second Silicon Valley in the world, with 30,000 crore constructions under way. The city is fast becoming an international location, thereby offering opportunities to people in the form of several new avenues.
The State government is making special efforts to make Hyderabad the best city as part of ‘Bangaru Telangana’ vision. In 2017-18, the government allocated Rs 1,000 crore towards developing Hyderabad into a global city. To reduce poverty, it proposed to build three lakh 2BHK houses in GHMC limits for the poor for free. Of these, one lakh houses are under construction at 109 locations at a cost of Rs 8,541 crore. About 15,600 mega double bedroom housing colony near BHEL at Kollur is coming up in 124 acres at a cost of Rs 1,355 crore.
Resolving urban problems
To address the rapid increase of vehicular traffic, the State government decided to build conflict-free corridors and express highways under the Strategic Road Development Programme (SRDP). This includes flyovers, multi-grade separators and skyscrapers at identified locations across the city. On about 100-km stretches of main roads, express highways and flyovers are proposed. At 56 centres for better facilities, necessary amenities are proposed besides multi-grade separators. Most of the assignments will be completed by 2019-end and about 70 per cent of the population will have hassle-free vehicular movement for two decades after completion of these projects.
As part of infrastructure development, 117 junctions are proposed to be developed with Rs 43.63 crore. The government took up construction of foot-over bridges (FoBs) at a cost of 3.82 crore at five spots. To meet the traffic needs in the next 20-40 years and to have hassle-free roadways, it decided to come with express highways and skyways on all four sides of the city. On the lines of Istanbul while preserving the historical monuments, the roads and traffic amenities will be improved.
A Disaster Response Force (DRF) was established for the protection of the city in coordination with Fire and Police departments. Hyderabad is the first metro to have such a disaster response force. For the comfort of citizens, Loo Cafes were set up with AC toilets, diaper changing room for children, cafe with Wi-Fi, water ATM and bank ATM, among other amenities.
Under the GHMC administration, municipal circles were increased from 30 to 48 and zones from six to 12. The government took steps to enhance the readership for youth by established e-libraries in community halls. The idea was to help them prepare for competitive exams.
The government initiated measures for reviving 165 lakes in Hyderabad, which either turned murkier or were encroached upon. Beautification of lakes with Rs 541 crore was also taken up and about 50 lakes within ORR limits would be developed with Rs 541 crore.
Further, the Charminar Pedestrianisation Project was taken up with Rs 35.1 crore. A multipurpose bus complex is proposed to replace the Gowliguda bus stand, allowing a fleet of 2,000 buses to ply every day. The Gandipet reservoir, historically known as Osman Sagar, has been quenching the thirst of Hyderabad residents for nearly a century now. On the occasion of its centenary celebration next year, the reservoir will get a facelift through beautification works along its bund.
Hyderabad Metro Rail project
The 72-km Hyderabad Metro Rail project is on the fast track and two of three corridors were thrown open to the public. Taken up at a cost of Rs 15,000 crore, it is the first-ever public-private-partnership (PPP) project in the country. Currently, the Metro Rail ferries over two lakh passengers every day.
The State government is emphasising on making Hyderabad a clean city. Under the Swachh Hyderabad initiative, about 5,096 works were taken up at a cost of Rs 200 crore at 425 clusters in the city. Keeping in mind that cleanliness should begin at home, about 44 lakh dust bins were distributed for dry and wet waste collection to every household in the city. The daily garbage collection increased from 3,500 MT to 4,500 MT. In Bibinagar, daily 12 MW of power will be generated from 1,100 MT garbage. At four places in the city special dumpyards are created for building material waste.
Swachh Bharat Mission declared Hyderabad as an ODF city on January 2 last year due to its initiatives in curbing open defecation and establishing numerous public toilets. As part of environment protection, electric vehicles were introduced for transporting garbage. A treatment plant is also being set up at a cost of Rs 1.86 crore in Jawaharnagar dumpyard.
As part of the Chief Minister’s Haritha Haram programme, GHMC planned to plant about 10 crore saplings in 2016 to give the concrete jungle some green cover. The civic body planted nearly two crore saplings in its limits, and developed 285 colony parks, 59 central medians and 34 nurseries. The government proposed to establish green brigadiers for the active participation of students, women and employees. As per instructions of Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao, the GHMC officials are developing forest blocks spread over 1.5 lakh acres within 60 km radius of Hyderabad.
Industrial pollution free-Hyderabad
The State government identified about 1,545 industries causing pollution in the city and decided to shift these beyond Outer Ring Road. About 19 such locations were identified for developing industrial townships.
The government planned for better drainage in the city, replacing the ancient network created by the Nizams. Works were initiated at an estimated Rs 5,540 crore for better drainage network in Hyderabad and peripheral areas besides Musi River rejuvenation. Further, it also proposed for expansion of drains at a cost of Rs 292 crore to avoid blockage of pipelines and for free flow of rainwater.
Welfare of urban poor
The government waived off power dues amounting to Rs 41 crore for nearly 3,35,135 lakh poor families. The poor were also exempted from paying water charges arrears amounting to Rs 44 crore. Full meals are being provided under Annapurna scheme at Rs 5.
GHMC is implementing a paperless e-office system for the first time in the country. Tracking of files is easy and efficient under the e-office system, preventing red-tape and corruption. Similarly, GHMC also implemented Development Planning and Management System (DPMS), and issued 13,012 permissions through it. My GHMC App was introduced through which citizens can pay property and other taxes, besides knowing the services rendered by the civic body.
By 2018 January, the LED Lights project in Greater Hyderabad was successfully completed except in a few parks, religious places and by-lanes. The project was taken up at a cost of Rs 271.4 crore. The traditional 4.53 lakh streetlights were replaced with new LED lights.
In all, 42 Model markets were planned at a cost of Rs 21.37 crore in Hyderabad and 31 of them were completed at a cost of 15.83 crore. Fish markets are also being established at four locations with Rs 13 crore.
Improved drinking water facility (Urban Mission Bhagiratha)
The government is according top priority to drinking water. Under the Mission Bhagiratha Urban programme, works were taken up at a cost of Rs 1,900 crore to provide drinking water in a better manner. To provide drinking water for 40 lakh people, 56 service reservoirs with storage capacity of 27.9 crore litres are being constructed. A major water chain link around Hyderabad is being developed at an estimated Rs 4,765 crore. At present, 448 million gallons of water is being supplied for the city’s needs. Further, the government is taking steps to construct two dedicated reservoirs for the drinking water needs, with 20 tmc capacity each at Devalamma Nagaram in Choutuppal mandal, Nalgonda district; and at Keshavapur in Shameerpet mandal.
No 1 city in the country
Mercer’s International conducted a survey of 230 cities and identified Hyderabad as the best livable city, according it the top position in the country. At the international level, Hyderabad stood at the 138th place.
In order to have a strategic plan and evolve a systematic way out, existing main roads, service roads, footpaths, street furniture and trees were examined. Foot rate of regular walkers, cycles, two-wheelers, cars, three-wheelers, buses, trucks and other details were obtained. Hawkers, number of shops, the parking system, temporary shelters adjacent to roads and other aspects were estimated. Existing underground piping system, power and telephone-related wiring and poles status on roads were also taken in to account. Based on the factsheet meeting, a strategic plan is being developed as per international standards.