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Mayor cancels contracts of 450 workers

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seeking solution: Communist Party of India (Marxist) councillors staging a protest against poor civic amenities and other issues outside the Corporation council hall in the city on Thursday.
seeking solution: Communist Party of India (Marxist) councillors staging a protest against poor civic amenities and other issues outside the Corporation council hall in the city on Thursday.

Staff Reporter

For not getting proper ratification from the council

MADURAI: Mayor G. Thenmozhi on Thursday cancelled 450 workers’ contracts which were entered without proper ratification from the council.

North Zone Chairman K. Esakkimuthu brought by the issue of “under-payment” of workers employed by the contractors.

He said that data entry operators who were supposed to get Rs. 3,750 a month were paid Rs. 2,000 to Rs. 2,500 only by the contractor. Six of the employees who tried to meet Union Minister M.K. Azhagiri to get their grievance redressed were sacked by the contractor.

Mr. Esakkimuthu complained that the contract had been extended without the council’s consent for more than a couple of years.

“When the senior officials in the Corporation were only getting a salary of around Rs. 30,000 a month, this contractor, who has not made any investment for his contract had been making huge money every month,” he said.

Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam councillor alleged that one of the Corporation staffers in the Health Department was in the payroll of the contractor to manage the contract employees.

Official sources said that contracts in employing workers in engineering department and drivers were cancelled. The 450 workers would continue to work till the new contract is signed by the month-end.

The Mayor also recommended cancellation of the contract for procuring around 900 tricycles for solid waste management in the city owing to poor quality of vehicles.

The Mayor asked the officials to inspect a vehicle of better quality suggested by her and go for that even if meant paying more money. Another Zonal Chairman (South) A. Manickam raised the issue saying that the vehicles delivered were not of the same quality of the sample shown.

Commissioner S. Sebastine said that the issue could be decided after an all-party meeting. During a discussion, the Mayor said that she had instructed the Commissioner to initiate distraint proceedings against buildings that had not paid the property tax. She was responding to Communist Party of India (Marxist) leader M. Ganesan who wondered why the Corporation was imposing higher water charges when it had left uncollected a huge amount ofproperty tax.

Walkout

Congress councillors walked out of the council meeting protesting against the Corporation administration’s failure to properly organise the birth anniversary celebration of former Chief Minister Kamaraj in Corporation schools on Wednesday.

“It was Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi who declared Kamaraj’s birth anniversary as Education Development Day. But the Corporation failed to celebrate it in a fitting manner.” The party members later walked out of the council in protest. They wore black badges as a mark of protest. Later, when they returned, the Mayor condemned the Chief Education Officer for not having informed about the Education Development Day. She said that various competitions would be organised in the Corporation schools and prizes distributed to mark the event.

Independent member M. Kameswaran complained of erratic supply of drinking water in his ward (Ward No. Two). “At a time when we are expecting additional water supply on commissioning the second drinking water project, the existing scheme itself is not functioning properly,” he said.

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