High-level meeting on Wednesday to seek government nod
A high-level meeting involving the Principal Secretary of the Local Self Government Department and the Executive Director of Kudumbasree will be held here on July 3 to examine whether construction for the pilot project of the Rajiv Awas Yojana (RAY) can begin in July.
Under the project, houses will be constructed for 1,032 families in Vizhinjam.
The Detailed Project Report (DPR) for the project at Mathipuram near Vizhinjam was prepared in 2011.
But it got delayed because the area falls under Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) III that prohibits construction above two storeys.
According to Corporation welfare standing committee chairman Palayam Rajan, when Vizhinjam transitioned from a panchayat to a Corporation ward, the categorisation of the zone under coastal management rules too should have been changed.
Clearance from the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests is still pending.
However, Corporation officials said that since the technicality would be sorted out eventually, there was no need to delay construction of houses in the area.
Keeping in mind issues of steep cost escalation because of the delay, Mayor K. Chandrika had said in a meeting convened on June 22 at the Corporation that the project be at least initiated soon.
The DPR is not being amended and CRZ regulations will be adhered to at least initially. Corporation officials believe that by the time the second floor is reached, glitches will be sorted out.
The meeting on July 3 will seek a go-ahead from the State government and the nodal agency of RAY in Kudumbasree. Ms. Chandrika told The Hindu that a date would be finalised only after this meeting.
Another discussion would have to be held with the Harbour Engineering Department regarding land acquisition.
Two acres of land is sought for the project but a more immediate requirement is a No-Objection Certificate (NoC) from the same department for granting 50 cents that would serve as space for transit accommodation.
The Union government has provided Rs.11 crore for the project and the Corporation has set aside Rs.4 crore.
More funds will be allotted when the utilisation certificate for the first phase is submitted. Over Rs.70 crore has been pledged for the project, the implementation for which is being carried out by a government enterprise, Hindustan Prefad Ltd.