Special Correspondent

TAMBARAM: Members of the Finance Commission on Friday visited different places in the suburbs of Chennai. They inspected development works under way and those completed, and visited sites of projects for which the State government has sought Central assistance.

The team included Vijay Kelkar, Chairman of the 13th Finance Commission; V. Baskar, Joint Secretary; D. Brahma Reddy and P. Harish, Deputy Directors; B. Swain, Assistant Director; and Rajiv Rangan, Officer on Special Duty, a release said.

S.V. Balachandran, Additional Secretary to the Government of Tamil Nadu (Finance), and Kancheepuram Collector Santhosh K. Misra were present.

Officials of the Department of Municipal Administration and Water Supply told reporters that Mr. Kelkar and the rest of the team first visited the Thyagaraja Swamy-Vadivudai Amman Temple in Tiruvotriyur for which the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Department had sought an assistance of Rs. 4.1 crore from the Centre to carry out renovation and improvement works. The temple has a history of more than 1,000 years, the officials said.

The team later visited Mettukuppam, Ondikuppam and Thaalankuppam hamlets coming under Tiruvottiyur and Kathivakkam Municipalities to look at anti-sea erosion works carried out by the government. While Mr. Kelkar returned to the city, the rest of the team members visited Kannan Colony in Alandur Municipality, where a wood-gas fired crematorium (gasifier) is under construction.

Officials said that the government had sanctioned 57 gasifiers for all municipalities in the State, of which 16 had been completed. The team then went to Pazhanthandalam of Kunrathur panchayat union where it interacted with women beneficiaries of ‘Vaazhndhu kaattuvom’ scheme. T

he team-members also visited Semmanchery and saw rehabilitation schemes being implemented for slum-dwellers and also a primary school. D. Chandrasekaran, Additional Director of Municipal Administration, K.P. Dhandapani, Regional Director of Municipal Administration, Chengalpattu, R. Mohan and N. Mahesan, Alandur Municipal Commissioner and Engineer respectively, were present.