To complete Muttam bridge before schedule

Deputy Chief Minister M.K. Stalin has announced appropriate rewards to the highways department officials if they complete the proposed Rs.48.85-crore bridge to be built across the Kollidam, linking Muttam in Cuddalore district to Manalmedu in Nagapattinam district, before the scheduled period of 18 months.

Mr. Stalin was speaking at a function got up on the premises of the engineering college at Kattumannarkoil, about 75 km from here, on Saturday. On the occasion he inaugurated six bridges and laid foundation stones for four more bridges, including the Muttam bridge, all costing Rs.108 crore.

There were expectations in many quarters that the Muttam Bridge should be completed within 10 months to one year. However, he would say that it should be readied before the target period, Mr. Stalin said.

Citing precedence in this regard he said that at the time of laying the foundation for the Rs.616-crore Ramanathapuram comprehensive water project in 2006, Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi announced prizes to the officials if they complete the project in two years as against the estimated period of three years.

The Tamil Nadu Water Supply and Drainage Board, functioning under the Local Administration Department, that executed the project in two years was duly rewarded.

Mr. Stalin said that whenever the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam came to power there was vast improvement in infrastructure such as roads, bridges and flyovers.

When he was Mayor of Chennai Corporation he constructed nine of the 10 flyovers planned so as to remove the traffic bottlenecks at important road junctions.

Only the Perambur flyover could not be taken up for technical reasons. However, now the technical hitches had been overcome and the flyover was ready for inauguration by March-end.

Moreover, the nine bridges were constructed at a cost of Rs.60 crore as against the original estimate of Rs.90 crore, thus, effecting a saving Rs.30 crore to the Corporation.

“However, when AIADMK came to power in 2001 the Perambur flyover project was put in cold storage. Above all, alleging malpractices in bridge construction cases were filed against M. Karunanidhi, myself and some of the then Ministers, but not charge-sheeted,” he said.

The AIADMK government never worked for social benefits, whereas the DMK government had launched many welfare schemes for improving the living condition of the people, he said.

SHG movement

The Self-Help Group concept floated in 1989 had now become a great movement paving the way for the empowerment of women. Mr. Stalin was insistent that he would personally hand over the revolving funds to over 3,000 SHGs on the occasion.

Health Minister M.R.K. Panneerselvam; Highways Minister M.P.Saminathan; Thol.Thirumavalavan and K.S.Alagiri, MPs; Durai Ravikumar, G.Aiyappan, Saba.Rajendran, Rajkumar and Rajendran, MLAs; G.Santhanam; District Collector P. Seetharaman; District Revenue Officer S. Natarajan and others participated.

More In: Tamil Nadu | National