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Delay in fund utilisation: councillors stage walkout

Special Correspondent

MANAPPARAI: A section of opposition councillors of Manapparai municipality walked out of the council meeting held here on Wednesday, protesting against what they called “delay in utilising the funds sanctioned under the special road scheme”.

They alleged that though the State government had sanctioned Rs.2.5 crore under the scheme, a few political heavyweights were posing a bottleneck to the same.

Initiating a discussion, Rajendran, (DMK) councillor referred to the non-participation of a bidder in the tender for the scheme. Although the bidder had earlier got a directive for re-tender from the Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court for executing the scheme, he had stayed away from the re-tender process. Mr. Rajendran said that the municipal administration should take adequate action against the bidder, as any further delay in executing the scheme would mean an additional time overrun and cost overrun for the State government.

Endorsing his views, V.P. Sankar a Congress councillor said that the special road works should be executed without any hitch for the benefit of students of a large number of schools and colleges. Raman (AIADMK) said that although the State government had sanctioned Rs.2.5 crore for the scheme, the same had not been utilised so far.

The Commissioner (in-charge) Nakkiran, assured that steps would be taken in course of time.

Not satisfied over the official's assurance, a section of AIADMK councillors led by Mr. Raman and comprising Pitchai Muthu; Vellaiammal; Ayisha Beevi; Selvi; Raja Rajeswari walked out of the meeting hall. Expressing support to them, a group of councillors — Sankar, Arul Viswasarani, Muthu Veeralekappan, (all belonging to Congress); Pandi Meena (MDMK); and Sowcat Ali (CPI) staged the stir.

They raised slogans urging the municipal chairperson, Saroja Kandaswamy, who presided over the meeting, to take immediate action for proper utilisation of the funds sanctioned by the State government.

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