Although the Tamil Nadu Housing Board’s tenements at Khajamalai are a self-contained housing area in a prime location in the city, the rainy season gives some anxious moments to its residents. Bushes that abound in between different blocks of the housing colony have become the abode of snakes. The problem is acute in blocks situated close to the strip of Defence ground along the K.K.Nagar Main Road and also those near EB Colony. Most of the over 600 houses in the colony are rented out to government employees.

In recent days, snakes have slithered into the houses and a few shops in the locality much to the shock of the residents. “Snakes often enter the colony and there have been instances when the reptiles have climbed onto the houses and the shops,” says a woman from the colony.

The corporation, struggling with shortage of sanitary workers, is hard-pressed to depute its staff to clear bushes in open spaces. This puts the onus of keeping the open spaces tidy on the people living in tenements.

The Tamil Nadu Housing Board, which is not equipped to clear the area, has now joined hands with the residents’ welfare association to take up a cleaning drive. “We have already launched a drive with the association to clear the bushes. The TNHB will contribute some money for the purpose,” said an officer of the board. An office-bearer of the residents’ welfare association said that they have planned to take up a mass cleaning drive soon to clear the bushes. Another said that the drive has to be taken up only after the monsoon to be effective. Otherwise the bushes would grow again, he pointed out.

Apart from the reptile menace, some of the houses in the colony are in dilapidated condition. In some of the houses, the concrete plasters of balconies have peeled off. The TNHB official said estimates have been prepared to repair the damaged houses.

The criss-crossing open drains behind the houses also make for an eyesore. Recently, the corporation has started giving underground drainage connections to the locality.