Brijesh Kalappa, the energetic national spokesperson of the Congress party has also a dual role to play. For he is also the legal advisor to the Karnataka govt, with the status of minister of state took time off to speak to The Sunday Guardian about the initiatives undertaken by the Karnataka govt to improve the city of Bengaluru. He was speaking ahead of the Invest Karnataka Summit which kicks off in the city from February 3.
“The CM has recently come up with a novel proposal--that is to make all the public transport in the city to be run on CNG’s. This is an exclusive – you are the first person who is getting to know this fact. Mind you there has been no court order yet the Chief Minister has moved this step at his own initiative. Not only this, all the CNG in these vehicles will be Euro 6 complaint. He (the Chief Minister) wants to ensure that is pro active in dealing with this
Another aspect which the Karnataka CM was working upon is to have tunnel roads. ‘These tunnel roads will go a long way in decongestion. When you move below the ground there are no land acquisition problems. Also I must tell you that we have imported the best technology from the world in order to execute these tunnels,” said Kalappa.
Kalappa also said that certain steps were being taken to improve the arterial roads and also to resolve the garbage issues. ‘We are going to take steps to resolve the garbage issues. Mind you, all these things are not easy as the previous govt (the previous govt controlled the municipal body of Bengaluru-the BBMP)-. It is only in October 2015 that we (the Congress) won the BBMP and we have a lot of work to do in terms of setting the things right which the previous govt failed to do. There was a mismanagement during their nine years and we have to repose the faith of the public in the Congress government.
As regards the steps taken to bolster the investors into investing into Bengaluru, Kalappa said that there were two smart cities have been approved . The first is Belgaum and the second is Davangere. We are shifting our focus to Tier Two cities—Manickeri. Coorg is an outstanding destination—it is called the Scotland of India. There are a number of cities in Karnataka – though we have to spend a lot more on irrigation. Our annual irrigation amount is 15000 crores –something which our neighbouring state Tamil Nadu does not spend since they are fortunate to have good irrigation.”.
He said that IT sector was very strong in Bengaluru and the manufacturing was happening around the Hubli Dharwad area. ‘Apart from that the state is very fortunate to have excellent tourist destinations. For instance we have Badami from where the Chalukyas came. Similarly we have Hampi the capital of the Vijayanagar kings—both these places are great tourist destinations,” he said.
When asked to sum up his message for the investors, Kalappa said, “ for the investors it is profit with pleasure.”