MANGALORE: The coastal city’s growth trajectory is all set to receive a boost with plans afoot to constitute the Mangalore City Task Force.

Brainchild of Mangalore City South MLA J R Lobo, the city task force in more ways than one could revive incomplete tasks that the Coastal Agenda Task Force (CATF) identified and set out to achieve in the early 2000. Lobo, then commissioner of Mangalore City Corporation, was the member secretary of CATF.

Lobo, while acknowledging that development has taken place in the city from the time he was the commissioner of the civic body, feels that a task force can give better shape and direction to the city’s accelerated development. N Vinay Hegde of Nitte Education Trust, who was then the chairman of CATF, Ananthakrishna, chairman, Karnataka Bank Limited, and others who were part of CATF have played a vital role in Lobo wanting to constitute the city task force.

Though the state government initially set up Mangalore Agenda Task Force in 2001 with a focus on the city, the focus was later shifted to Dakshina Kannada and Udupi districts paving the way for the formation of CATF. Opining that the earlier CATF set up when SM Krishna was the chief minister lost it city-centric focus, Lobo says there is a need to focus on growth of the city and the best brains from all fields need to be drawn in to ensure that this becomes a reality.

While saying that the CATF under Vinay Hegde did a good job of listing out priorities for the city’s development and giving a road map to achieve it, Lobo avers it is time that the expertise that went into the CATF report is leveraged for city’s betterment. The CATF had sub-committees on infrastructure, urban development, agriculture and allied sector development, social and human development, IT development, industrial and environment, and tourism development.

And unlike most politicians, Lobo is also for continuity of projects mooted by his predecessor N Yogish Bhat. “The Rangamandira project has been hanging fire for more than two decades now. This and other projects which have lingered for all these years will be conceptualized in a better manner and strict emphasis will be given for their time bound implementation,” Lobo says and adds that that post-election, it is time to bury the political hatchet and work unitedly for development.

Courtesy: Times of India