The issue of increasing mosquito menace in the city rocked the Corporation Council meeting on Friday with Councillors cutting across party lines raising the issue.

Communist Party of India (Marxist) leader M. Ganesan said that mosquitoes were prevalent in all parts of the city and urged the officials to tackle the root-causes for the menace. Around 600 posts of sanitary staffers were lying vacant and this shortage of manpower was also one of the reasons for the prevalence of mosquito menace, he said.

V.K. Gurusamy, East Zone Chairman, N. Ganesan, Desiya Murpokku Dravida Kazhagam (DMDK) Councillor, and other Councillors also raised the issue.

Acknowledging the problem, Mayor G. Thenmozhi instructed the officials to attend to it and also to avail necessary funds to tackle the menace. City Health Officer V. Subramaniam said that ‘Delta Methrin,’ an insecticide used for fogging and found to be ineffective, had been replaced by ‘technical Melathion’ in the last two months. Both the insecticides were in the Government-approved list.

Further, ‘abate’ (temephost), a chemical, was being applied in all overhead tanks, containers, wells and in other areas where clean water was stagnant. ‘Bacillus thuringiensis’ was being deployed in drainage water and in large stagnant water bodies to kill mosquito larvae.

A total of 33 special chikungunya camps were held covering all 72 wards in November and December. Of the 7,000 people covered, 25 had chikungunya and 34 had dengue. A sum of Rs. 3 lakh was sanctioned for procuring medicines besides Rs. 1 lakh for Siddha and Ayurvedic medicines, said Dr. Subramaniam.

All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) leader of the council P. Salaimuthu said that only genuine occupants of the Central Market should be allotted space in the new building coming up at Mattuthavani.

Alleging that ‘benamis’ were benefiting, he said that the records of 1974 should be traced and only the names registered in them given deposit notices, he said.

While praising some revenue-raising initiatives of Corporation officials, he also condemned the administrative inefficiency in other areas and the emphasis of the civic body on privatisation. He led a walk-out of AIADMK Councillors alleging corruption in the tender process.

Corporation Commissioner S. Sebastine said that collection from toll gates on the Ring Road had increased by Rs. 50,000 a day in the one week when Corporation personnel were posted to supervise the collection exercise.

This figure had been given as the collection benchmark for the private agency managing the toll gates, he informed the meeting.

M. Subburam (Congress) requested the Mayor to expeditiously relay roads damaged in the recent rains. K. Esakkimuthu, Chairman, North Zone, called for filling vacancies and appointing more doctors.

P.M. Mannan, Deputy Mayor, and K. Sakthivel, Chief Engineer, Corporation, took part.