The city topped in the implementation of Jawaharlar Nehru Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM). With abundant funds available the execution of the projects is going at a fast pace. According to sources, after Ahmadabad, Vijayawada stands in the best position in following the guidelines of the mission in the implementation of various projects in urban areas. The city has also received accolades as it has successfully implemented projects like e-governance, double-entry accounting, collection of more than 95 per cent of property tax and funds allocation for urban poor.

Even after spending crores of rupee on the relaying and upgrading the city's sewer lines under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM), civic body can hardly heave a sigh of relief that they have given the city dwellers respite from waterlogged streets during the monsoons. Thanks to the century old sewer lines and age-old pumps at various pumping stations. Moreover, engineers are also skeptic about the fate of these pumps once de-silting and sewerage-relaying projects under the JNNURM are completed.

Nine more towns in Rajasthan have been selected for creating sewerage infrastructure under the Urban Infrastructure Development of Small and Medium Towns (UIDSMT) programme of the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM). A grand total of Rs.389 crore has been sanctioned for the projects which are likely to get going from this coming July in a fast track mode.

Even as the Bharatiya Janata Party has expressed displeasure about the manner in which the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) has undertaken sewerage treatment for the rivers in the city, the latter has sought fresh funds under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) for continuing the work. The civic administration is also readying a plan to address the sewerage treatment demands up to 2015. The BJP leadership is not amused, saying that PMC should address present day issues before gazing into the future.

Q&A/ M Ramachandran The Bus Rapid Transit System (BRTS) may have failed to charm the Delhi commuter, but it is working well in many cities around the world. About Rs 3,500 crore have been committed from the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) for its introduction in another 8-10 Indian cities. Urban Development Secretary M Ramachandran discusses the system with Anjuli Bhargava and the steps necessary to make it work: Which cities are suited to an MRTS and which ones to a BRTS?

The government is considering awarding a grant from the funds of the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) to meet a funding gap in the Mumbai metro project's first corridor that is being built by the Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group (ADAG). If the decision is approved, the Mumbai metro will be the first project involving private participation to receive a JNNURM grant. Currently, JNNURM grants are mainly given to local bodies or city corporations for drinking water, drainage and sewage projects.

Though there is an economic boom in India there is a flipside to it too. According to estimates there are 80.7 million urban poor in India and a housing shortage of 24.7 million, says Kumari Selja, minister of state (independent charge), housing and urban poverty alleviation.

The Forum for Sustainable Development, (FSD), engaged in advocating sustainable development, has asked the government to evaluate the Bus Rapid Transport System (BRTS), its impact on the society, environment and public safety before its launch, said forum convenor of the coastal areas, Mr S. Bhujanga Rao.

The Chief Minister, Dr Y.S. Rajasekhar Reddy, set the foundation stone for scattered houses scheme at the Praja Patham programme held during his visit to the district here on Wednesday. Addressing a huge gathering on the occasion, the Chief Minister said that the Congress government unlike the earlier TD government was committed for all-round development of the city.

The Urban Improvement Trusts in Rajasthan will speed up the process for regularisation of slums in the cities and residential colonies developed on agricultural land. The move is expected to provide much-awaited relief to the residents of these areas. Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje, presiding over a meeting of the trusts here, said giving title deeds to the poor people living in these colonies would meet their aspiration for owning a house of their own. She said the regularisation work should be completed in a specified timeframe.