Public participation needed to protect Kozhikode’s Beach Bliss park, says former MLA

A view of the Butt Road Beach Bliss that was reopened after renovation in Kozhikode.   | Photo Credit: K. Ragesh

“When children at our home destroy their toys, do we stop buying them toys? No, but we try to make them assume ownership and protect the toys.”

That was the theory A. Pradeepkumar, the former MLA of Kozhikode North, applied to ensure the protection of all his pet projects in the constituency. Now when Butt Road Beach Bliss, the latest project he envisaged, has become a reality after he stepped down from the post, Mr. Pradeepkumar desperately hopes that people in the neighbourhood assume a sense of responsibility and protect the park from the destruction similar to what it endured a few years ago at the hands of vandals.

The Butt Road Beach Bliss park was reopened by Minister for Tourism and Public Works P.A. Mohamed Riyas on Monday. It was first opened 10 years ago as an experiment at a cost of ₹2 crore, encompassing tiled pathways, a lagoon in the centre, and some minor landscaping, and since then has been a popular hub of morning walkers. It became a relaxation spot for families in the city unlike the much popular beach near the Corporation Office, which was visited by tourists too. But, maintenance fell short and it soon fell into the hands of miscreants. That even the wiring of lights in the park was stolen vouches for the extent of destruction that occurred.

“The protection of public property is not in the hands of the officials who keep it under lock and key, but the public, who feels the responsibility to protect what is theirs, and, for it, a sense of ownership is necessary,” said Mr. Pradeepkumar. He had experimented with his theory at the Government Higher Secondary School in Nadakkavu, where despite initial instances of destruction, morning walkers and the elderly in the locality, who used the school grounds to relax, kept it safe.

The newly opened Beach Bliss park now has walkways, musical fountain, cycle and skating tracks, cafeteria, children’s play area, and a lot more. It was renovated at a cost of ₹2.15 crore, which included funds from the District Tourism Promotion Council and the MLA. It is being maintained by the DTPC at present.

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Printable version | Jan 18, 2022 7:33:33 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/kozhikode/public-participation-needed-to-protect-kozhikodes-beach-bliss-park-says-former-mla/article35180102.ece

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