Biometric identification of over 10,000 families that have built dwelling units on ‘objectionable land' will begin shortly in the city. It will facilitate identifying the eligible beneficiaries for resettlement and rehabilitation of the affected families in newly developed townships in areas such as Perumbakkam on the outskirts.

The term ‘objectionable land' covers areas such as government land, poromboke, canals, waterways and footpaths on which habitations are not permitted, according to officials of various government agencies involved in the exercise.

Even though the biometric identification was planned last year by the Tamil Nadu Slum Clearance Board (TNSCB) for rehabilitation of all affected families, the process was delayed on account of the Assembly and local body elections.

TNSCB had recently asked the Chennai Corporation and the Public Works Department to furnish data pertaining to the number of people likely to be rehabilitated in the city. The first phase of biometric identification, covering 10,000 families in the Chennai Corporation limits, to be carried out by the civic body would be completed next month.

The list of people on the banks of Adyar, Cooum and Buckingham canal would be readied by the Public Works Department for resettlement and rehabilitation.

The list of people to be covered under the biometric identification by the Chennai Corporation would include those living on encroached land on the banks of 16 micro drains.

According to an earlier survey, 3,947 families along the 16 micro drains maintained by the Corporation were found eligible for alternative accommodation. It had identified 4,233 encroachments along the 16 micro drains.

The PWD, TNSCB and the Corporation started enumeration of the families along waterbodies in and around Chennai last year.

Collection of preliminary data on the families along the micro drains has already been completed.

The encroachments initially estimated along the 16 micro drains were 5,418.

As part of the first phase, TNSCB is said to be in “urgent requirement” of data on around 4,000 families along the micro drains and 2,500 families in encroachments along road margins.

The families would be allotted new houses by the TNSCB. Micro drains such as Mambalam Canal, Captain Cotton, Vysarpadi, Kodungaiyur, Jawahar, MGR, Egankipuram, Jafferkhanpet, Guindy Estate, Chellamal, Nungambakkam, Trustpuram, Raj Bhavan, Reddikuppam and TVS canals would be improved after the resettlement and rehabilitation. Bus route roads of the civic body would also become wider with better footpaths after the resettlement and rehabilitation.

Resettlement and rehabilitation of over 30,000 families on objectionable land would be completed by June 2012.

The TNSCB has planned to provide all amenities including better transport connectivity, schools and police stations in the newly created townships even before the resettlement and rehabilitation process begins.

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Aloysius Xavier LopezJune 28, 2012

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