"Several infrastructure and development works in Bangalore have not been moving fast due to shortage of funds in the civic body (BBMP) and delays in clearing pending bills up to Rs 1,600 crore," he told the legislative assembly in Belgaum.

The 10-day winter session of the state legislature is being held since November 25 in this northern city, about 500 km from Bangalore.

Admitting that the cash-strapped civic body had sought more funds from the state government to ease its financial crisis, Siddaramaiah told ruling Congress lawmaker NA Harris that BBMP and BDA (Bangalore Development Authority) had taken up road widening, grade separators, corridor development and signal free roads.

"Paucity of funds is a major reason for the slow progress of infrastructure and civic works," he lamented.

Harris represents the Shantinagar assembly constituency in the city centre. The state urban development department, which is held by the chief minister as an additional portfolio, has invited bids to build five signal-free corridors and grade separators at 16 road junctions across the city at a cost of Rs 618 crore.

"The signal-free corridors will ensure smooth movement of vehicular traffic in the grid-locked city, which is crowded with 4.6 million two-wheelers and cars for a population of 8.5 million," Siddaramaiah noted.

The Chief Minister also told the assembly that the Bangalore One, the consumer service centers across the city, would soon offer more people-friendly services such as railway ticket booking, recharge of direct-to-home (DTH), mobile and data cards.

"We are in the process of opening Bangalore One centers in all the 198 wards across the city from 89 centers offering 59 services to ensure more people will be able to access them and avail services," he said.


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