The Revenue Department began on Tuesday the process of removing some houses and a temple that encroached upon Government land at Sandhaipettai in Vadavalli, a suburb located about 10 km west of the city.

Located near the Vadavalli Bus Stand, this area has been earmarked for some development works such as the construction of a structure for a weekly shandy and a water tank. The tank is nearing completion and it will store water supplied under the Bhavani Combined Drinking Water Scheme. The scheme also is in its final stages, according to official sources.

A shandy is held at this spot every Sunday. But, the location is hardly friendly to both the public and the vegetable and fruit sellers. Rain turns the entire area slushy.

According to a source, a shandy premises would be created and shops earmarked for the sellers on the lines of the Uzhavar Sandhais. A proposal for this has been made by the District Agriculture Marketing Committee, a source said. Former councillor of Ward 6 in Vadavalli S. Kuppuswamy led the initiative to remove the 100 sq.ft. Kaliamman Temple located in this area. Some political functionaries at the spot said there was no trouble in removing the structure.

Pointing at the criticism of the removal of temples in the city and suburbs to enable development, they said in the case of the temple removed on Tuesday, it was a unanimous decision of all those managing it and the local people who worshipped there.

“People belonging to all castes had been worshiping at this temple that was a very small structure for close to 30 years. It was expanded into a 100 sq. ft. temple five years ago. But, when the reasons for its removal were explained by the authorities, we took the initiative to remove it. An alternative space for the idol will be identified,” Mr. Kuppuswamy said.

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