Madurai Mayor presents ₹5.84 crore surplus budget

The Madurai Corporation’s budget this year focuses on underground drainage systems, provision of drinking water and revamping old markets in the city

Published - March 04, 2024 04:18 pm IST - MADURAI

Mayor Indrani Ponvasanth (centre) released the Madurai Corporation budget on Monday, March 4, 2024 . Commissioner S. Dinesh Kumar and Deputy Mayor Nagarajan are also seen

Mayor Indrani Ponvasanth (centre) released the Madurai Corporation budget on Monday, March 4, 2024 . Commissioner S. Dinesh Kumar and Deputy Mayor Nagarajan are also seen | Photo Credit: MOORTHY G

Madurai Mayor Indrani Pon Vasanth presented a surplus budget of ₹5.84 crore at the Madurai Corporation’s headquarters, Anna Maaligai, on Monday, March 4, 2024.

Reading out the proposals for the ensuing financial year and the work completed by the Madurai Corporation over the last fiscal, she said that the Corporation had a total revenue of ₹1,296.06 crore against an expenditure of ₹1,290.22 crore.

With numerous projects underway across all 100 wards, the Mayor said that the civic body had received funds from the Union and State governments as borrowings and subsidies among others. A few projects are also being executed with funds from the Asian Development Bank (ADB), she said.

Among the highlights of the budget was the announcement that from the ensuing year, each council member in Madurai Corporation would get ₹25 lakh each as ward development funds.

Ms. Pon Vasanth said there were 11,149 roads including tar, paver block and cement among others in the city covering 16.86 lakh metres. After the recent rains and floods, many roads that were damaged, were being spruced up.

With the objective of bringing down the expenses incurred by way of electricity consumption, streetlights are to be replaced with more efficient bulbs, Ms. Pon Vasanth said.

Solid waste management

With regard to solid waste management, only 63 wards had proper underground drainage (UGD) systems. Steps were being taken to provide proper UGDs in the remaining 37 wards. Already, with funds of ₹775.82 crore, the Corporation had laid a UGD network on the North Bank of Vaigai river covering 20 wards under the Smart City Initiative. Close to 93% of the work has been completed, the Mayor said.

On the south bank of the Vaigai, Ms. Pon Vasanth said that under the AMRUT 2.0 project, ₹684.36 crore had been earmarked for execution of the UGD with a subsidy from Central and State governments and also from the ADB fund.

The Corporation pumped around 80 million litres of sewage daily from the 100 wards to the Avaniapuram and Sakkimangalam treatment plants. With the cyclic activated sludge technology, around 35 million litres is being treated and sold to consumers such as the Madurai airport for use in gardening among other use.

CM’s breakfast scheme

The Mayor said that the Chief Minister’s Breakfast Scheme for government school children has benefitted 8,298 children studying in classes 1-5. During a visit, Minister Palanivel Thiaga Rajan, had suggested that the breakfast scheme be given to children in classes 6-10 within the city limits. Through a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiative, the Corporation has been providing breakfast to an additional 1,350 children from September 11, 2023.

The Mayor said that more dog-catching vehicles would be procured for all zones. For instance, last year, 562 stray animals were impounded and the owners fined ₹10.38 lakh. Likewise, stray dogs would be caught and animal birth control procedures be performed on them this year as well.

The Madurai Corporation has also earmarked funds for improvement of markets including Subramaniapuram Market at ₹1.99 crore, the ‘Thayir’ (curd) Market at ₹1.53 crore, the MGR bus stand at Maatuthavani at ₹1.81 crore and Arapalayam bus stand at Rs 1.07 crore. Work is already underway and about 60 to 75 % of the projects have been completed.

The project to shift the East Marret Street onion market to the Maatuthavani vegetable market is underway. The Corporation had earmarked ₹10.30 crore for this project and 30% of work has been completed. The Mayor hoped to get this finished soon as it would hel decongest traffic in the central part of the temple city.

Two new electric crematorium

The city will soon have two more electric crematoriums: one in Kochadai at ₹1.51 crore and one in Melamadai at ₹2 crore. So far, 40 per cent of work on them has been finished, the Mayor said.

With regard to drinking water distribution and sourcing, Ms. Pon Vasanth said that apart from drawing water from the Vaigai dam, the Corporation sourced from borewells dug up in the river bed, the Cauvery integrated drinking water project and from other borewells in the city.

As the civic body provided 95 litres/day to its citizen against the national average of 135 litres/day/per citizen, it had been decided to draw water from the MullaPeriyar river. Work for this was at an advanced stage, with 76% completed.

Ban on posters in Corporation buildings

Conveying the message that the city needed to be kept clean and green, the civic body has banned pasting of posters by private persons on the walls of Corporation buildings including its offices and schools across the city.

So far, 77 councillors have been given an office in their wards to receive petitions from the public. Buildings would be constructed for the remaining 23 councillors this financial year.

AIADMK absent

AIADMK councillors were absent when the Mayor presented the budget. Many of the Congress ward councillors were also a no show.

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