Municipality kept in the dark on developments: chairperson

‘Most Maradu residents lack confidence in implosion’

With the four flats at Maradu set to be pulled down this weekend, the agencies tasked with the implosion have begun loading explosives into Alfa Serene, while Maradu municipality chairperson T.H. Nadeera alleged that the municipality had not been informed of important developments in the process.

Three floors of the flat, one of the two that will be razed on Saturday, were loaded with explosives on Monday. The entire flat would require 400 kg of emulsion explosives loaded into 3,600 holes, said R. Venugopal, deputy chief controller of explosives, Petroleum and Explosives Safety Organisation (PESO).

Explosives will be loaded into all four buildings and the pillars will be wrapped with geotextile fibre by Thursday. Meanwhile, teams of police persons, Maradu municipality staff and revenue officials met residents living within 200 metres of the flat who would have to evacuate during the implosion. “They were told about what they should do before they leave their houses like covering windows and closing doors and switching off electricity,” said Snehil Kumar Singh, Fort Kochi RDO, who is in-charge of the demolition.

Door-to-door campaign

The team went door-to-door around Holy Faith and Alfa Serene flats and a similar exercise will be repeated on Tuesday.

While Mr. Singh maintained that apprehensions of the residents had been resolved, Maradu municipality chairperson T.H. Nadeera said that most residents still lacked confidence in the implosion process.

She alleged that the municipality had been kept in the dark about details like the change in timing of Alfa Serene’s implosion from 11.30 a.m. to 11.05 a.m.

There was still no clarity about the insurance either, she said.

K.A. Shaji, who lives near Alfa Serene, said that the residents continued to remain anxious about the impending implosion and its consequences. They were also unsure about the insurance and had not seen any agreement yet, he said.

A mock drill is scheduled for Friday in which police, fire and ambulance vehicles will be positioned, entries and exits from the area will be marked and a mock control room will be set up.

A team from IIT Madras would arrive on Thursday to set up equipment that would measure vibrations from the implosion, Mr. Singh said.

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Printable version | Jul 11, 2020 4:43:17 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/municipality-kept-in-the-dark-on-developments-chairperson/article30498007.ece

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