Downtown

Residents of Sarvamangala Nagar discover the power of collective effort, form an association

Achievements of the Association include getting authorities concerned to install transformers, set right sagging electrical lines and replace damaged electrical posts. Photo: Special Arrangement  

It was a time when Sarvamangala Nagar, located at the tail-end of Chitlapakkam and adjacent to Sembakkam Lake, lacked many basic amenities, which included a post box. Their representations to the officials concerned did not evoke any response. Determined to have a post box in their area, a group of residents formed ‘Sri Sarvamangala Nagar Residents’ Association, Chitlapakkam, in August 1998, under the presidentship of P.N. Srinivasan, a freedom fighter and a social activist.

After a prolonged battle, their wish was granted when the postal authorities, on the request of members of the Association, set up a post box at the colony in 1999.

Following this, the Association members began to boldly take up various civic issues in their locality with the authorities concerned.

M. Ravi, secretary of the Association, said: “Having been a member of the Association for over a decade, I would say the major challenge was bringing in more people. We thought that organising several sports activities would attract more youngsters. By this effort alone, we managed to get 200 volunteers on board.”

The Association has taken many proactive moves.

One of them is teaming up with the Sembakkam Civic Welfare Association and approaching the National Green Tribunal to stop the dumping/burning of garbage in the Sembakkam lake.

The members raised awareness about responsible disposal of waste/plastic by issuing circulars asking residents not to throw the waste in streets/vacant plots, but hand it over to the conservancy staff.

Achievements of the Association include installation of transformers, setting right sagging electrical lines and replacing damaged electrical posts.

One of the major problems faced by the residents is frequent power fluctuations. Ravi says, ‘We had insisted on the construction of an electrical sub-station, which would provide a permanent solution to problem. Work on the same is in progress.” For keeping criminals at bay, he says, “a CCTV camera was installed.”

In order to increase the green cover in the area, members of the association have planted hundreds of saplings in the area. Another achievement, Ravi says, is ensuring, ‘after much struggle’, that a weir was constructed at the Sembakkam lake.

For details, contact Ravi at 9841322473/22237080.


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Printable version | Jun 14, 2021 11:09:44 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/downtown/Residents-of-Sarvamangala-Nagar-discover-the-power-of-collective-effort-form-an-association/article13977028.ece

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