CHENNAI: The Chengalpattu municipality which is one of the oldest in Tamil Nadu is yet to get the Underground Drainage System (UDS) even after funds were allocated over 20 years ago.
.“During election time, political parties promise us that they’ll construct UDG in the municipality if they win. Years have passed and many leaders from various parties have won but still, UGD is a dream for us,” claims Dinesh of Chengalpattu Town.
The municipality was formed in 1886 and is one of the oldest in Tamil Nadu. It consists of 33 wards with 75,000 residents and has more than 400 streets. Though it’s the oldest and considered the entrance to Chennai, it has no UGD plans till now. The drainage water stagnates on the streets and in most areas, water enters households.
Residents say there’re storm water drains (SWD) in the streets but they’re useless when it rains. “SWD is not linked properly, so water gets stagnated on all streets,” laments Ramanathan. “We’ve been asking for UGD for more than 20 years, but no steps have been taken to construct one. We’ve even submitted petitions to the CM and Collector but there’s no use.”
Sources claim that in 2001 the State government allocated Rs 38 crore for UGD construction in Chengalpattu but there were no developments in the project. “In 2007, the project was re-started, and the funds were increased to Rs 56 crore. No developments after this too. In 2019, the AIADMK government announced that UGD will be constructed at Rs 125 crore but it did not proceed further,” sources tell DT Next.
When contacted, the Chengalpattu Municipal official avers, “After the local body election, works for constructing the UDG in Chengalpattu started again. Proposal has also been submitted to the State government for approval. Hopefully, soon we will receive funds for the work to be started.”