Kar­nataka re­clas­si­fies 1,400km of state high­ways as ur­ban roads

Hindustan Times ST (Jaipur) - - Front Page - Vikram Gopal letters@hindustantimes.com

The Kar­nataka govern­ment has re­clas­si­fied 1,476.69 km of state high­ways as ur­ban roads that will hence­forth come un­der the purview of the ur­ban lo­cal bod­ies (ULBs).

In a govern­ment or­der, dated June 13, the Pub­lic Works De­part­ment (PWD) has said this change has been ne­ces­si­tated as the stretches that pass through the ju­ris­dic­tion of ULBs re­quire their co­op­er­a­tion. Stretches of state high­ways have been re­clas­si­fied across all 30 dis­tricts in the state. This de­ci­sion comes just over two months af­ter the Supreme Court man­dated ban on sale of liquor along high­ways was to come into force. The apex court had or­dered the clo­sure of all such out­lets by April 1.

How­ever, of­fi­cials at the PWD here said there was no con­nec­tion with the ban. “This de­ci­sion has been taken to en­sure bet­ter main­te­nance of roads pass­ing through ULBS,” Prin­ci­pal sec­re­tary of the de­part­ment, M Lak­sh­mi­narayana, said. He added that the de­ci­sion was not take to by­pass the Supreme Court’s or­der.

Sources at the de­part­ment said the Cen­tre had also been asked to look into re­clas­si­fi­ca­tion of na­tional high­ways and that a de­ci­sion in this re­gard was pend­ing.

Ac­cord­ing to of­fi­cials at the ex­cise de­part­ment, there are around 3,800 liquor out­lets lo­cated on state high­ways and another 2,200 on na­tional high­ways across the state.

“There are no ex­act fig­ures of how many out­lets will come un­der the purview of these re­clas­si­fied roads,” said Ra­jen­dra Prasad, joint com­mis­sioner of the de­part­ment. “We will take a call on re­new­ing li­cences of such stores once we know how many stores are lo­cated on the re­clas­si­fied roads,” he added.

Liquor store own­ers wel­comed the move. “It is a wel­come move, but we have to see what this means on the ground,” said S Gu­ruswamy pres­i­dent of the as­so­ci­a­tion.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.