Staff Reporter

Says Government norms strictly adhered to; quality ensured

NGOs doing their best to provide basic amenities450 houses already handed over to tsunami victims Collector inspects construction of orphanage

NAGAPATTINAM: J. Radhakrishnan, Nagapattinam Collector, on Monday appealed to the non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to speed up the construction of permanent houses for the tsunami-affected families.

Mr. Radhakrishnan, who inspected the construction of permanent houses at various places including Sellur, Andanapettai, Thethi and Velankanni, told The Hindu that the NGOs were constructing the houses as per the norms of the Government and in the sites allocated to them.

Mr. Radhakrishnan said he was happy that the quality of construction was good and pointed out the NGOs were doing their best to provide basic amenities in the construction site including protected drinking water, street lights, good roads and sanitation facilities.

He said in all 17,461 permanent houses were being built of which nearly 450 houses had been handed over to the tsunami victims at Samanthanpettai, Vanagiri, Akkaraipettai and Pandagasalai.

Nearly 14,000 houses were under various stages of construction and foundation stones were being laid at several places, he added.

Mr. Radhakrishnan said the construction of permanent houses would be completed by April or May this year. Of the 303 hectares required totally, about 280 hectares had been acquired and handed over to the NGOs free of cost. The Government had spent nearly Rs.180 crore for providing relief and rehabilitation of tsunami affected families, compensation and subsidy to fishermen for purchase of boats and Rs.30 crore for purchase of land for construction of permanent houses.

Bridge across Kaduvaiyar

The Collector, who inspected the over-bridge constructed across Kaduvaiyar river at a cost of Rs.10.85 crore connecting the coastal hamlets of Keechankuppam and Akkaraipettai, said the bridge would be thrown open for traffic after Pongal.

He said would be a boon for the fishermen of the several coastal villages in Nagapattinam.

Mr. Radhakrishnan inspected the construction work of the Rs.3-crore new building for the Annai Sathya Memorial Government Orphanage here.