Tue. Sep 26th, 2023
Proposed Rs 500-Crore Mountain Township Project in Himachal Pradesh Aims to Decongest Shimla

The government of Himachal Pradesh is seeking to decongest Shimla, the “Queen of the Hills,” by pushing forward a proposed Rs 500-crore mountain township project. The project will be funded by the Union Ministry for Housing and Urban Development.

A central team, along with experts from the National Institute of Public Finance and Policy, will visit Jathia Devi, located near the Jubbarhatti airport, to assess the feasibility of the satellite township project over the next three days. Himachal Pradesh has submitted financial details for the project and expects liberal assistance from the central ministry.

The recent heavy rain and resulting devastation in Shimla have highlighted the urgent need to reduce new constructions in the congested core area of the town. The mountain township project aims to alleviate this burden. It may involve the relocation of government offices and major institutions to the new township, although this could face opposition from residents and political parties.

Himachal Pradesh is competing with Sikkim, Assam, Manipur, and Arunachal Pradesh for the project. The Himachal Urban Development Authority has already acquired 35 hectares of land at Jathia Devi for the project, but an additional 100 hectares will need to be acquired to create a self-sustaining township. The township will offer essential facilities such as hospitals, colleges, schools, banks, and parks to encourage residents of Shimla to relocate.

Efforts to establish a satellite township in Himachal Pradesh were made during the previous Congress regime, but did not materialize. Now, the government is determined to proceed with the project to alleviate congestion in Shimla.