March 30, 2020
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'Better Than Haphazard Urban Growth'

Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal is on the defensive on the Anandgarh project.

'Better Than Haphazard Urban Growth'

Doesn’t your Anandgarh project violate Le Corbusier’s plan and the Punjab Capital Periphery Control Act which bans development within 16 km of Chandigarh?
The Anandgarh project will not affect Chandigarh in any way. Le Corbusier’s concept is still relevant; instead of allowing haphazard growth in the periphery of the city to meet the demand for housing, it is advisable to have planned growth. The Mohali and Panchkula experiments are examples. Unregulated development makes it impossible to provide civic and other amenities.

Didn’t you oppose the New Chandigarh, much the same as Anandgarh?
There is a difference between a satellite town as New Chandigarh was to be and Anandgarh. Besides, we are offering lucrative compensation according to market rates to the farmers as well as other benefits. The previous government used to pay only average collector rates.

Didn’t your manifesto promise farmers their land would not be acquired?
I’ve already answered that question by saying the compensation would be attractive.

Won’t this weaken Punjab’s claim on Chandigarh?
Anyone who knows me knows my stand on Chandigarh. In our delegates’ convention held earlier this year in Amritsar, we passed a resolution reaffirming our claim to Chandigarh.

Hasn’t the Chandigarh administration objected to the plan?
Not to my knowledge. We are keen on planned development of the capital region and have been cooperative and responsive to its needs.

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