BELGAUM/ BANGALORE: It's a grand political statement, built and maintained at a huge cost to the exchequer, but now there's a proposal to convert it into a tourist spot. What should have been a hub of legislative and governmental activity will perhaps teem with tourists taking selfies and littering the place.
Suvarna Vidhana Soudha (SVS) in Belgaum was conceived and built at a cost of Rs 400 crore to decongest Vidhana Soudha in Bangalore. It was inaugurated in 2012. Three legislature sessions have been held there so far; but for the best part of the year, it's closed. The government spends Rs 70 lakh a month for the upkeep of the Soudha.
Two or three legislature committee meetings are held in SVS every month, with the Belgaum district administration functioning from its own mini Vidhana Soudha in the city.
Assembly speaker Kagodu Thimmappa told reporters in Belgaum on Wednesday that a meeting will be held in Bangalore next week to discuss how to develop SVS and keep it active through the year.
There is a proposal to develop a garden at a cost of Rs 13 crore around SVS for people to sit and relax. Besides constructing a Legislators' Home on the premises, there's a plan to have 100 houses in the first phase.
The 16 legislature-level committees have been instructed to hold meetings once a month in SVS.
Thimmappa said the government plans to hold the winter session in second week of November in Belgaum. The dates will be announced at the end of this month.