Stand-off between local body and GCDA over Rajendra Maidan

Giving a twist to the controversy over setting up a laser show facility at Rajendra Maidan, the Greater Cochin Development Authority (GCDA), which is piloting the project, has decided to submit a site plan and a note on the project to the Kochi Corporation.

The authority’s project had come under fire at a meeting of the Kochi Corporation Council on Friday with the LDF members demanding that the work should be stopped immediately as it was carried out without local body’s consent. The councillors also demanded that the local body should retain the possession of the ground, which they said, was associated with the history of the land.

Chairman of the Town Planning Standing Committee of the local body K.J. Sohan had told the council that the authority had not informed the corporation about the project.

In a debate in the council, Mayor Tony Chammany had indicated that the local body would initiate legal action if the authority carried out any construction activities there.

N. Venugopal, the chairman of the authority, said one of its officials would share a site plan and a note certified by its engineer to the local body on Monday for its “information.”

Mr. Venugopal said the documents would be provided to the corporation for the purpose of sharing the information. The authority being a government institution did not have to get the clearance of the corporation for its project. Going by the rules, all that the authority needed to do was inform the local body about the project within 30 days of beginning the work.

He said as no constructions as defined in the Kerala Municipal Building Rules were carried out at the ground, no clearance had to be obtained for the laser project. Moreover, the State government had issued administrative sanction for the project, Mr. Venugopal said.

Mr. Venugopal ruled out the claims of the corporation councillors on the ownership of the ground. The authority had been maintaining the ground for the last four decades and no one had ever challenged this during the period, he said.

More In: Kochi