Special Correspondent

It is necessary as huge money is involved

COIMBATORE: Even as the Coimbatore Corporation has begun the process of making presentations to councillors on infrastructures schemes, the elected members want special meetings on these to be held in the council.

The suggestion for special meetings was made at a recent presentation on slum development and traffic improvements held by the Corporation at a private auditorium.

CPI(M) demand

The demand followed an outburst by Communist Party of India (Marxist) councillor S. Velmurugan over meetings being held outside the council.

The Corporation officials and other councillors tried to reason out that the council hall was too small for slide presentation and that it could not accommodate members of voluntary organisations and members of the public. Mr. Velmurugan, however, wanted to know why no meeting had been held in the council on these schemes that were to be implemented under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission.

While Mr. Velmurugan's arguments were rejected by other councillors, the general opinion that emerged from the meeting was of the need to have special meetings on the mission schemes.

Corporation Commissioner P. Muthuveeran responded by saying that presentations by consultants on various schemes were only aimed at keeping the councillors informed and also to seek their suggestions that could be incorporated in the plans.

The need for a special meeting was raised first by Congress councillor R.S. Thirumugam.

Some among the very few councillors who turned up for the presentation also saw the need for such meetings in the council. East Zone Chairman and Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam member S.M. Samy said a special meeting should be held on every detailed project report.

All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam councillor P. Rajkumar, who was not among those who attended the presentation, said on Wednesday that special meetings should be held not only to discuss every project before implementation but also to review the progress. "Huge money is involved. The city never got such huge sums so far. Therefore, it is necessary for the entire council to know of every scheme, the way it will be implemented and how the money is spent," he said.

Officials' promise

Corporation officials said that no councillor or the requirement of any section of the public that could be included in the schemes would be overlooked. The presentations were only a step towards keeping all the councillors totally informed.

Councillors also admitted that some among them still did not understand what points they should raise at meetings on major schemes. There was no point in raising minor ward-level problems such as a leaking drinking water line.

The Corporation said orientation would automatically come when the councillors turned up in full strength at the presentations that were to be held periodically.