Special Correspondent

To improve slums, infrastructure

KSUDP to provide aid for Rs.20-crore project

Opposition UDF stages walkout

Thiruvananthapuram: The city Corporation Council, which met here on Friday, approved a Rs.20.84-crore package for improvement of slums and development of community infrastructure.

The project, to be taken up with financial assistance from the Kerala Sustainable Urban Development Project (KSUDP), involves the development of 30 slum colonies and 20 markets, establishment of 50 anganwadis, a palliative care centre, construction of a hospital at Iranimuttam and four primary health centres, redevelopment of five primary health centres, a women’s resource centre at Attukal, a finishing school, vocational training for youth, construction of toilets in schools and public places, entrepreneurship development schemes and establishment of biogas plants.

The package was earlier cleared by the city-level steering committee.

The Opposition United Democratic Front (UDF) staged a walkout from the council meeting, alleging corruption in the functioning of the computer centre under the corporation. Participating in a discussion on the bylaws for the Centre for Information Technology and Industries, UDF councillors expressed fear that the proposed provisions would strip the council of its control over the institute.

Mayor C. Jayan Babu assured the house that the bylaws would help to streamline the operations of the centre. He said a committee of officials, headed by the Additional Secretary, was looking into the allegations raised against the institute. Not satisfied with the reply, the UDF members trooped out of the hall.

Replying to another motion moved by Mudavanmugal ward councillor Rajasekharan Nair, the Mayor announced steps for clearing long-pending applications for widow pension. Earlier, highlighting the issue, Mr. Nair said dozens of applications cleared by the council in 2005 were piled up at the Nemom zonal office. He said several widows were running from pillar to post to get their applications sanctioned.

The corporation will take up a tree-planting drive on the premises of the garbage treatment plant at Vilappilsala on June 20.

Mr. Jayan Babu said the scheme had been worked out with the help of the Forest Department.