Union Minister for Tourism, Culture and Development of Northeast Region, and Secunderabad MP, G. Kishan Reddy, said lack of proper coordination between the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) and the Hyderabad Metropolitan Water Supply & Sewerage Board (HMWSSB) has led to the tragic death of 11-year-old Mounika who was washed away through an uncovered drain in Kalasiguda the day before.
The Minister along with former MLA Marri Sashidhar Reddy and others visited the mishap site, met the family of the deceased, and expressed his condolences to them. Later, talking to the media, Mr. Kishan Reddy criticised the functioning of the municipal corporation and its personnel for their apathy and negligent attitude which is resulting in avoidable tragedies like the latest one.
The GHMC is financially broke and has not been paying contractors on time, which is causing delay in improving the storm water drain network. “Despite getting an advance warning about heavy rains from the Met department, the municipal personnel have been found wanting and not being alert to deal with exigencies,” he lamented.
Both the civic bodies - GHMC & HMWSSB appear to be working at cross purposes and this could be seen in the manner in which roads are dug and old drains demolished without any planning.
“When will the government wake up from its slumber and arrest such incidents. The slums continue to lack proper drinking water connections, drains are in a dilapidated state and roads are broken. Providing basic amenities should be taken up as seriously as new flyovers in the posh areas. When the government get 80% income from the capital, why can’t civic infrastructure be better,” questioned the Minister.
Mr. Kishan Reddy complained that the government had stopped releasing funds to corporators only because the party has a sizeable presence in the elected council and demanded it to be restored.
Why curbs on media?
The Minister also questioned the need to build the new Secretariat when Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao himself does not go there, even as Pragati Bhavan is out of bounds for common people. He expressed his displeasure over curbs on the media in the new edifice and said it only mirrors the Nizam’s autocratic rule.
After participating in the PM Modi’s ‘Mann Ki Baat’ programme at Sanatnagar, Mr. Reddy asserted that media plays a critical role in a democracy and it’s not right on part of the government to put obstacles in its free functioning.