Proposal on new bus stand has been hanging fire for 20 years

The absence of any announcement on the integrated bus stand and shifting of the wholesale sections of Gandhi Market, two of the long-pending proposals, in Tiruchirapalli City Corporation Budget for 2014-15 has come as a disappointment to city residents.

Despite its oft repeated commitment to set up an integrated bus stand for the city, the corporation has not been able to firm up the plan for a variety of reasons. The vexed issue has eluded a consensus with respect to the choice of location for the bus stand under successive governments. The previous Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam government had planned to set up the bus stand at Panchapur but the present dispensation does not seem to be very keen on the site. The All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazahgam-led Corporation Council seems to be awaiting a decision from the State government on the matter. The need for a spacious bus stand for the rapidly expanding city cannot be over emphasised, especially in the wake of the addition of five new wards in the outskirts. Although the corporation used to make some token allocations for the proposal almost every other year over the past decade, the Budget for the next financial year remains silent on the subject.

Some civic activists have been pitching for getting the Defence land at Mannarpuram; but this could be a long drawn out and difficult process. “It is disheartening to note that the corporation has failed to give shape to the proposal that has been pending for 20 years. It should identify a suitable location, preferably get the Mannarpuram Defence land, to set up the bus stand. The government should initiate the project and complete it before the end of its term. People should not suffer for political reasons,” said H. Ghouse Baig, Secretary, Golden Rock branch of Consumer Protection Council, Tamil Nadu.

Wholesale market

Similarly, the civic body has failed to come up with any commitment on shifting the wholesale sections of Gandhi Market, although in recent months the Mayor and the Commissioner had made a series of announcements on shifting the onion and banana wholesale sections.

The Budget, however, has indicated that the proposal on establishing a bus stand for Srirangam would move forward this year. The project report and the design of the bus stand had been prepared and the project work would begin after obtaining administrative sanction from the government, it says.

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