Minister bats for better Madurai Master Plan

Expressing dissatisfaction over the Madurai Master Plan 2041 prepared by a private consultant, Finance Minister Palanivel Thiaga Rajan on Wednesday said a better proposal would be readied in the coming days.

Mr. Thiaga Rajan, winding up a discussion on the Master Plan held at the Collectorate, said the plan was missing crucial components for the development projected for the district in the next 20 years, despite the consultant having worked on the subject for a longer period.

With the support from all quarters, a better plan for the greater good of the 18 lakh population of the city would be prepared, he said.

The meeting organised by Madurai Local Planning Authority, was chaired by Collector S. Aneesh Sekhar. Ministers Mr. Thiaga Rajan and P. Moorthi, MP Su. Venkatesan, MLAs and representatives of industry and tourism took part.

The Collector asked all stakeholders to give their suggestions for the Master Plan within the next 10 days.

While the proposal included Kariyapatti of Virudhunagar district and Tiruppuvanam of Sivaganga district, Mr. Moorthi objected to leaving major portions of Madurai district. He wanted the Local Planning Authority to reconsider the decision and include areas within 25 km radius around the city. Most of the elected representatives and stake holders agreed.

While former Minister R.B. Udhayakumar listed out developmental works implemented in the last 10 years of AIADMK rule, Mr. Thiaga Rajan said the budgetary allocation for maintenance of big development projects that was around 10% in the past had come down to 5% in the last 15 years. “With fund allocation for maintenance, buildings, roads and hospitals have suffered.”

He pointed out that two-wheelers accounting for a higher 43% of total vehicles in Madurai led to traffic congestion, pollution and parking problem.

Commissioner of Police Prem Anand Sinha suggested paid parking facilities to decongest the roads. Similarly, certain commercial activities should not be allowed around the Meenakshi temple to enable adequate space for tourists to the temple. People should be willing to walk for some distance to reach the temple.

Representatives of industry said failure to update the Master Plan after 1995 had led to a slump in industrial development of Madurai as re-classification of land became a major hurdle.

“Madurai has got only three industrial estates and needed more such facility to give impetus for industrial development,” said president of MADITSSIA, M.S. Sampath.

Metro Rail project and electrical multiple unit services were also suggested as cheaper mode of transport.

Architect R.M. Valliappan, said the Master Plan should be ecologically sensitive and prevent industrial effluents ruining water bodies.

Former Mayor V.V. Rajan Chellappa recalled the suggestion to increase the number of zones in Madurai Corporation to five for better administration.

Corporation Commissioner K.P. Karthikeyan, Superintendent of Police V. Baskaran, MLAs Periyapullan alias P. Selvam, P. Ayyappan and A. Venkatesan, were present at the meeting.

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Printable version | Dec 6, 2021 2:33:55 AM |

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