On Friday, representatives of resident welfare associations met Corporation officials at the divisional office in ward 173, after being invited by the civic body to share their demands before the monsoons began.
Software professional Ganga Sridhar, an office-bearer of Raja Street Residents Welfare Association, said that they had the following demands from the Corporation, desilting all the storm water drains, level pot holes and fix water stagnating locations, prune trees, ensure extra fumigation for mosquitoes during peak monsoon and regular garbage collection, to arrest mosquito breeding in the locality.
“Our main point was the storm water drain structures on Raja Gramini Thottam area, where sewage is mixed into these lines. We want the Corporation to take a decisive action, as the area gets waterlogged during the monsoon. There is a Tamil Nadu Electricity Board (TNEB) junction box, due to which electrocution is a major concern,” she said, adding that the officials had revealed that exit points near the sea are being desilted first.
Sources say that zonal officials have been asked to engage with the resident welfare associations, to address the requirements before monsoons. A Corporation official said that a contract for desilting 1,137 km of storm water drains has been given out for 13 crores, and work has already started.
“The desilting will be done manually with the use of protective gear. Out of the 1,894 km of storm water drains, 1,137 km is being worked upon. The rest of the drains are in a good condition,” said the official. Earlier this year, the Madras High Court had directed the Centre and State governments to enforce the ban on manual scavenging. The Corporation official revealed that the civic body is in the process of mechanising the desilting of storm water drain network.
“We resorted to manual method since we are in the process of mechanising this procedure. The procurement of machines is taking longer than expected due to the cost factor involved. In the meantime, we didn’t want to obstruct the process of cleaning up the storm water drains before the monsoons,” added the official.