Today's Paper

Seeking a roadmap for city development

K.V. Prasad



Even after three years, almost all the schemes remain only on paper: CPI(M)

We want transparency in implementation and no burden on the people: AIADMK



COIMBATORE: For the first time in three years, the Coimbatore Corporation is to hold a special meeting in the Council on November 24 to discuss more than 10 infrastructure development schemes that it plans to implement under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission at Rs. 3,186 crore.

Pointing out that a full-fledged meeting is being held in the Council three years after the schemes had been drawn up, the Opposition parties in the Corporation want a clear road map to emerge at least from the meeting. “The members want a clear picture on the mission itself. They have been demanding transparency. That is why we have planned this meeting,” says Mayor R. Venkatachalam.

“It is wrong to say that nothing has been done in the last three years.After we took charge in 2006, the schemes have been pursued closely.”

The Mayor also believes that a consensus approach to implementing the schemes will emerge from the meeting when all the councillors are clear on every aspect of all the schemes.

Corporation North Zone Chairman and Communist Party of India (Marxist) member C. Padmanabhan says: “We want to know how the Corporation is going to mobilise the funds needed to meet 30 per cent of the cost of the projects.”

The Central Government will provide 50 per cent as grant and the State Government will give 20 per cent as grant or interest-free loan.)

“Three years have elapsed since the launch of the mission and almost all the schemes remain only on paper,” Mr. Padmanabhan points out. (Only the project for houses for the urban poor has taken off.)

Through the Council meeting, the public should know of every aspect of the schemes, he says.

The Mayor agrees with this view and says that special meetings can be held hereafter on individual schemes.

“We agree that JNNURM schemes cannot be discussed in the ordinary meetings of the Council.”

Leader of the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam in the Council P. Rajkumar says the schemes have been wrapped in mystery in terms of funding.

Things must be made very clear at this meeting, so that it provides for a clear roadmap for implementation.

“None of us is against the schemes. We want transparency in implementation and no burden on the people.”

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