|GTA chief Bimal Gurung laying the foundation stone for a new|
Krishi Bhavan in Darjeeling
GTA hurry to start work on development projects
The Gorkhaland Territorial Administration appears in a hurry to start work on various pending development projects in the hills ahead of the general elections.
Speaking today in Darjeeling on the sidelines of the foundation stone laying ceremony for a new Krishi Bhawan, GTA chief executive Bimal Gurung said, "The Lok Sabha election will be announced soon and the code of conduct will be put in place, which will make it difficult for us to announce any new projects to be undertaken.”
He added, “We have several projects to start and complete and I want to do this at the earliest because the current GTA's tenure ends in the next three years."
The new Krishi Bhawan will come up at the same place where the Khatau Bhawan is located. The infrastructure housing the GTA agriculture department will be dismantled to accommodate the new building. The project is estimated to cost Rs2.94 crore and will comprise a conference hall, research and training centre, a weather forecasting and soil testing station and a dormitory and office spaces.
Similar structures will also be set up in Kalimpong and Mirik for promoting and providing the best of facilities for the agricultural sector of the hills. The GTA chief executive said the council has received Rs200 crore as a special assistance grant from the central government and the money will be utilised for various development works.
Highlighting the importance of the agriculture sector, Gurung said, "The agriculture sector is a revenue generating source. It has huge potential in the hills and we must be equipped to exploit this. This is the reason why we should upgrade facilities as well as set up new infrastructures.”
The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha chief said the GTA would go on a development spree to meet the new council's timeline. "The GTA has already started development work but I want to complete the inauguration of projects by February 22-23," he informed.
The GTA chief executive on Tuesday will lay the foundation stone for a 10-bedded hospital at Kagey in Kalimpong after inaugurating a Critical Care Unit (CCU) at the Darjeeling district hospital. On February 13, Gurung will attend the foundation stone laying ceremony for a passenger ropeway at Jamuney, about 15km from Darjeeling town.