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Kundamestri drinking water project approved

Staff Correspondent

Proposal passed amid protests by Opposition parties


The Kundamestri project is estimated at

Rs. 30 crore

The project will supply water to Madikeri city




Making a point:BJP members, including Madikeri MLA M.P. Appachu Ranjan (fourth from right), speaking to president of the Madikeri CMC P.D. Ponnappa in the special meeting held at Madikeri CMC on Tuesday.

Madikeri: The special meeting of the Madikeri City Municipal Council (CMC), held here on Tuesday, approved the Rs. 30-crore Kundamestri drinking water project for Madikeri, amid protests by members of the Opposition.

President of the CMC P.D. Ponnappa presided over the meeting convened to discuss and approve the Kundamestri project. The plan is to pump water to the Kootuhole reservoir on the outskirts of Madikeri from the Kundamestri source for supply to Madikeri city. Funds required will be sought from the State Government.

Opposition councillors T.M. Aiyappa of the Congress and S.I. Muneer Ahmad demanded that a decision to implement either the Kundamestri project or the Betri project (water from the Cauvery) should be taken only after discussion with MLAs, the MP concerned and MLCs. They took exception to the absence of many councillors in the meeting, to which Mr. Ponnappa stated that meeting notices were issued to all members five days ago. Some of them could not attend because of personal work, he clarified.

He appealed to the Opposition members to cooperate with the CMC to take a final decision on the Kundamestri project instead of indulging in time-wasting tactics. K.S. Ramesh of the BJP said that bringing all the leaders under one roof at a time was a tough task and a decision must be taken in the meeting itself. But the Opposition members did not agree.

They pointed out that the Kundamestri project was earlier approved for Rs. 7 crore and it must be implemented that way. Mr. Ponnappa stated that the project had to be revised in view of the State Government's stipulation that every citizen should be given 135 litres per capita a day. Kundamestri was a viable project and if Betri had to be considered, it would require at least Rs. 55 crore, he said.

Madikeri MLA M.P. Appachu Ranjan, who intervened, said if the CMC approved the Kundamestri project, he would secure the Rs. 30 crore required from the State Government to implement it. Encouraged by this, Mr. Ponnappa started announcing that the project had been approved by majority vote.

Mr. Ranjan took exception to this and said that he was prepared to secure higher allocations for the implementation of the Kundamestri project.

Finally, amid protests by seven members belonging to the Opposition, the Kundamestri project was approved. Vice-president of the CMC Lata Bangera and Commissioner Srikanth Rao were present.

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