The process of issuing smart cards for encroachers, by the Chennai Corporation, has hit a road block in areas of north Chennai as well. The work was suspended in south Chennai in April after opposition from elected representatives.

The Corporation commenced biometric identification of slum dwellers along the margins of 16 micro drains in the first week of April. After residents of Sharma Nagar in Vysarpadi, led by their elected representatives, opposed it a few days ago, the work had stopped abruptly. Now, the work on biometric identification is not being carried out in any of the zones. The Corporation has covered only 2,000 of the 10,000 families living on encroached land along micro drains and road margins .

The work was initially suspended in slum areas along Mambalam canal following stiff opposition from councillorsalleging that the list prepared earlier had failed to include many beneficiaries.

As a system for verification of the beneficiaries by the Corporation is yet to be in place, the revised beneficiaries’ list is unlikely to be prepared within the time stipulated by the Tamil Nadu Slum Clearance Board (TNSCB).

Eviction of encroachments along canals and roads was proposed to begin in April. The encroachers who receive smart cards would be eligible for alternative accommodation by the TNSCB. However, the suspension of the biometric identification process is likely to have an impact on the original resettlement proposal.

The civic body had started biometric work in north Chennai last month as there was not much opposition there. Over 150 families along Wall Tax Road were covered .


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