In the run up to the World Classical Tamil Conference, held here in June 2010, the Coimbatore Corporation purchased mobile urinals to be placed at the conference venue.
It bought 10 urinals at about Rs. 65,000 a piece. It bought 60 mobile toilets too.
At the end of the conference, the Corporation passed a resolution suggesting that it could rent out the toilets and thereby earn income.
A few months later, when the Tiruvannamalai district administration sought to purchase 20 of the toilets, the Corporation accepted the same. Of the remaining 40 mobile toilets, the Corporation installed 25 at public places and retained 15 to be let on rent.
Since then the Corporation has been regularly letting out the toilets on rent.
The Corporation sources said that it had installed the toilets near the Coimbatore Railway Junction, near the Regional Transport Office on Balasundaram Road, near the Ukkadam Bus Stand, near the Peelamedu Bus Stop on Avinashi Road and a few other places.
The civic body also let on contract the maintenance of the urinals.
The job of the contractor was to fill the water tanks and clean the urinals, which the civic body had placed above manholes to facilitate easy discharge of the waste.
Two years later, almost all the 10 urinals are at the Coimbatore Corporation premises, rusted, damaged and in unusable state.
In short, the urinals are part of scrap waiting to be disposed.
The sources said that the iron frames that held together the base rusted because of repeated exposure to water and came apart.
As a result the stone that formed the base and rested on the iron frame fell to the ground.
There was no way the Corporation could have left the urinals on the roads because they were no longer in use and had turned a hindrance for the people.
Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam Councillors, however, refused to buy the argument. A. Nandhakumar, Councillor (Ward 52), said that the Corporation could have better maintained the urinals, which were of great use to the people.
He blamed the officials for the poor maintenance alleging that the officials were treating with contempt all the assets related to the World Classical Tamil Conference.
He went on to add that the Tambaram Municipality had found it so successful it had purchased similar urinals.
Mr. Nandhakumar wanted the Coimbatore Corporation to place at urinals at public places like bus stands.