Punjab’s Initiative To Provide Urban Facilities To Rural Areas
Signs Mou With International Company
5 Dariya News (C.P.Singh)
S.A.S. Nagar , 01 Nov 2012
The Punjab Government today took major initiative to provide urban facilities to rural areasby signing a Memorandum of Understanding with IL&FS that would identify potential clusters for the Provision of Urban Amenities in Rural Areas (PURA) Projects so as to facilitate the development and implementation of the PURA Projects. Balwinder Singh, Director, Rural Development and Panchayat on behalf of Punjab Government and Dr. A.K. Krishna Kumar, Executive Director, IL&FS signed the MoU in the presence of Surjit Singh Rakhra, Rural Development and Panchayat Minister of Punjab.Disclosing this here today, Rakhra said that PURA project will aim at providing quality physical infrastructure, high-end market linked vocational skills, and economic activities. The total cost of each PURA project is expected to be Rs.240 crores over the project life-cycle, coming in from ongoing Government schemes, PURA Grant and private sector. Rakhra said that the Scheme attempts in converging existing Government initiatives complemented by additional support from PURA Grant and leveraging public funds with private capital for creation and management of infrastructure along with economic activities to improve the quality of life in rural areas as well as guide them to the next stage of development.The Minister added that the scope of the scheme is to select private partners to develop livelihood opportunities, urban amenities and infrastructure facilities to prescribed service levels almost akin to urban standards and to be responsible for maintenance of the same for a period of ten years in select Panchayat/cluster of Panchayat.The selected private partners would be required to provide amenities like water supply and sanitation, roads, drainage, solid waste management, street lighting and undertake skill development activity as well as provide ‘add-on’ revenue-earning facilities such as village linked tourism, integrated rural hub, rural market, agri-common services centre and warehousing etc.. Rakhra said that the Government of Punjab wishes to utilize the resources and expertise of IL&FS Cluster Development Initiative Limited (“IL&FS Clusters” – a subsidiary of the leading financial institution Infrastructure Leasing & Financial Services Limited that has developed several infrastructure projects in the country on PPP mode) in undertaking necessary activities for development and implementation of PURA projects in the State. Prominent among others present on the occasion included Chief Parliamentary Secretary Mantar Singh Brar, Financial Commissioner Rural Development and Panchayat Mandeep Singh Sandhu.