The ration shop on Rameswaram Road, T. Nagar, finally gets some respite, as the TUCS will start the repair work on the building, according to official sources. The shop, which is run by The Triplicane Urban Co-operative Society (TUCS), has been in a dilapidated state for a few years now.
The TUCS building houses three shops with card holders numbering 1882, 2332 and 800 (kerosene only) at each.
The building, which is more than 50 years old, has cracked walls and leaks during rain. The room that is used for billing and weighing the items is so small that customers are forced to wait in a queue outside, which is filthy. One side of the compound wall has collapsed and the debris has been dumped inside the compound.
Devaki, a customer, says, “The condition of the place where we have been getting food items is pathetic. We are happy that rice is given at Re. 1 but our health is at stake. The place has been absolutely unhealthy and unhygienic.” She is a resident of Rajapillai Thottam and says that most of her neighbours purchase here.
Thenmozhi, a resident of Gandhi Street, alleges that one can see even insects and rats in the shop. “We are anxious about the quality of these food items and wonder whether they are safe to consume.”
Customers complain that the food items are not available most of the time and they are forced to visit often. A woman complains that the staff forces them to purchase items such as soap and other cosmetics that are sold in ration shops, in addition to their regular purchase.
Pointing out that the building is unsafe for a large gathering, Ranganathan, a customer says, “In the beginning of the month, there is a long queue at the shops. The space for the queue at the food counter is full of sludge, while at the kerosene counter, one has to stand on the road.” According to R.G. Sakthi Saravanan, TUCS Joint Registrar/Special Officer, “The ration shop on Rameswaram Road has been identified for repair work. We have estimated the cost to be Rs. 70,750. The work will be completed by the first week of August.”
Talking about the ‘Kamadhenu Co-operative Pharmacy,' established by TUCS, Mr. Saravanan says that the six medical shops will start functioning from August 1. They are fully air-conditioned and furnished, he says. The 15 per cent discount announced at these shops will be given in the form of gift voucher which can be exchanged at its supermarkets.
The free consultancy at the Triplicane office will include Siddha (three days), Unani (one day) and Ayurveda (three days).
The shops have come up at Teynampet, Ashok Nagar, Besant Nagar, Royapettah, Kilpauk and R.A. Puram.
The TUCS building on Rameswaram Road is under renovation much to the relief of the customers.