The dilapidated group houses of the Irular colony in Masanatti village in Krishnagiri district is posing danger to the lives of 18 families.
The roofs of the two houses of M. Bairamma and B. Kottai Mary had collapsed a year ago when they were away. Since then, the two families had shifted to another place in Natrampalayam panchayat.
M. Veerabadran (40) a resident of the colony told The Hindu that the government had allotted 20 group houses 15 years ago. The ceilings of many of these houses were badly damaged. People were forced to cover the roofs with polythene sheets to prevent rain water from seeping in. In some houses, people used wooden logs support ceilings from caving in.
No house patta
Mr. Veerabadran urged the government to repair the houses before it collapsed and injured the people. He said that the Block Development Officer and the panchayat president had failed to heed their pleas to repair the houses. The authorities told them that there was provision to build only new houses and not for repairing the old group houses.
N. Samappan (23) of the colony said that none of the Irulars were given patta for the group houses.
“If we had obtained patta, we could have approached the government for allotment of green houses under the Chief Minister’s Special Scheme”, he said.
Lack of roads , street lights
The colony lacked proper roads, street lights and public toilet facilities. But the people were supplied water regularly from the Over Head Tanks(OHT) built by the Tamil Nadu Water supply and Drainage Board. Though the group houses were allotted 15 years ago, they were given free power connection only six months ago, said Mr. Samappan. Four houses belonging to B. Bairappa, B Madhappa, N. Muniraman and S. Nanjappa were yet to get free power supply.
When contacted, an official of the Block Development Office in Thally told The Hindu that since there was no provision in the government for renovation of the dilapidated houses, they wrote to the district collector for allocation of special funds for the purpose.
Apart from this, the officials had approached the local MLA, T. Ramachandran for allocation of funds for renovation under the MLA Local Area Development Fund.
The MLA can allocate Rs. 25,000 to Rs. 1 lakh per house for renovation, the officials said. Panchayat President P. Thappakuzhi was unavailable for his comment.