Various departments and local bodies in and around Coimbatore have drawn up proposals and estimates to the tune of Rs.300 crore for improving infrastructure and the works will begin soon, Deputy Chief Minister M.K. Stalin said on Thursday.

He was here to plan and review arrangements for the World Classical Tamil Conference in June and was accompanied by Special Officer for the Conference K. Allaudin.

Mr. Stalin said that proposals for improving the infrastructure had come even from Municipalities, Town Panchayats and Panchayats.

Earlier, he visited the VOC Park to assess whether the procession to be taken out on the last day of the conference could start from there. En route he inspected sites for putting up stage for the Chief Minister and delegates to watch it.

Various events of the conference would take place in 20 halls of the Coimbatore District Small Scale Industries Association (CODISSIA) Trade Fair Complex. Mr. Stalin went around this complex.

Later, he visited the Coimbatore Central Prison area. The government has decided to shift the prison outside the city and set up a botanical garden to commemorate the conference.

Mr. Stalin told reporters that of the 165 acres within the prison premises, 93 acres was lying unutilised and would be used for setting up the botanical garden in the first phase.

The rest of the works would be taken up after shifting the prison.

It would be the first of its kind botanical garden in the State with access points from Dr. Nanjappa Road, Bharathiar Road, Balasundaram Road and ATT Colony. Food courts and public convenience would form part of the facility.

For locating the prison outside the city, three places had been identified and were under consideration.

Of the land available with the Central prison, a few acres would be set aside for expanding, improving and modernising the bus stand at Gandhipuram.

A convention centre would also come up on the jail grounds.

Equipment were on the way for setting up an A (H1N1) testing laboratory at the Microbiology Department of the Coimbatore Medical College Hospital.

A number of committees were being constituted for handling various responsibilities and VIPs from Coimbatore would also be included in such committees.

Others who accompanied him during the inspection included Mayor R. Venkatachalam, Additional Director-General of Police (Law and Order) K. Radhakrishnan, District Collector P. Umanath, Corporation Commissioner Anshul Mishra, Vice-Chancellors M. Rajendran (Thanjavur Tamil University), C. Swaminathan (Bharathiar University), Nodal Officer S. Prabhakaran, City Police Commissioner P. Sivanandi and Inspector-General of Police, West Zone, Pramod Kumar.

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