Municipalities of Telangana should be examples for other states. A true homage to the father of the nation Mahatma Gandhi will be in the effective execution of Pattana Pragathi, the integrated programme to transform the urban landscape, which also values cleanliness and sanitation, MA&UD Minister K.T. Rama Rao said on Friday.
The department, for the same reason, observed the 151st anniversary of Gandhi on Friday as Swachhata Diwas across the 142 municipalities in the State, he said.
The meeting Mr. Rao addressed here, after inaugurating a slew of projects for Bhongir, was also symbolically organised on the premises of a cleaned-up dumping yard.
Mr. KTR along with Energy Minister G. Jagadish Reddy, MPs B. Lingaiah Yadav and Komatireddy Venkat Reddy, laid the foundation stone for an integrated market, a graveyard, and inaugurated a bio-mining unit and a faecal sludge treatment plant.
Marking the day, he also launched the Pattana Pragathi quarterly newsletter and a public toilet monitoring application.
According to Mr. Rao, the State government is implementing a well-planned strategy in building urban infrastructure that also takes care of the future needs.
“In the next seven years, with a 7% increase from now, about 50% of the population would reside in urban centres, attracted by its better health, education and job prospects. Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao has a strategy in Pattana Pragathi and citizen-centric municipal legislation,” he said. Reading out numbers, Mr. Rao explained that Telangana since 2014, on the municipal front, has made significant progress.
“There are 1,327 nurseries, 197 dry resource centres and 140 compost yards, the one we are seated here included,” he said.
Mr. Rao said all the municipalities should aim for an open defecation-free (ODF ++ tag), a Swachh Bharat Mission protocol acknowledging sustainable sanitation, including faecal sludge management.
And to encourage healthy competition among municipalities, annual Pattana Pragathi awards on February 24, would be given away in various categories, he said. Bhongir legislator P. Sekhar Reddy handed over a cheque worth ₹1 crore to Mr. Rao towards projects.
Commissioner and Director of Municipal Administration N. Satyanarayana and District Collector Anita Ramachandran and others participated in the programme on Friday.