Only half the complaints on Corp. helpline redressed this month

It is election time and complaints are pouring in at the Chennai Corporation’s ‘1913’ helpline at Ripon Buildings but the official response has been rather lacklustre.

After the notification of the Lok Sabha elections on March 5, over 1,500 residents have registered their complaints but civic officials have been able to redress only half the grievances.

According to the data available, as many as 245 grievances related to public health are pending. Over 40 complaints related to streetlights are yet to be attended to, officials said. Kodambakkam reported the highest number of grievances regarding ‘pending works’— 118.

However, zones such as Tiruvottiyur, Manali, Madhavaram and Sholinganallur, recently added to the Corporation limits, but with perennial problems, reported fewer grievances.

Residents’ calls are being scrutinised by senior officials to facilitate quick response but the official machinery is yet to complete work on about half of the calls, officials said, attributing the delay in completing works to the restrictions imposed by the model code of conduct in effect for the Lok Sabha elections.

However, the new call centre commissioned last year continues to function with a total of 24 personnel manning it in three shifts round the clock. Bogged down by election work, civic officials are working overtime to redress public grievances.

Meanwhile, the toll-free helpline 18004257012 for the elections is also receiving fewer complaints on illegal graffiti, posters and banners. On Thursday, only 16 cases pertaining to violations of the model code and nine related to electoral photo identity cards were reported.

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