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Even as the Kochi Corporation is going all out to make its golden jubilee celebrations a huge success, many incomplete projects cast a big shadow over the festivities. The Corporation is planning to invite the Vice President to inaugurate the celebrations. The UDF-led council, which is two years into its tenure, has dismally failed to complete any of the projects. Many of these projects have been shelved while some of them are yet to be implemented. Kochi Express takes a look at some of the project which the Corporation failed to implement.

E-governance

Even though the Corporation began the e-governance project with an aim to provide all its services via online, it failed to fully implement the project. Though the Corporation spent nearly Rs 9 crore, only some services like the registration of marriage, birth and death certificates and booking of the Town Hall are being provided via online. Other services including payment of the tax are still being done the old way. Another chink in its e-governance project is the delay in arriving at a consensus with TCS, which manages the service, after the contract expired.

Garbage disposal a dream

Even though Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan directed the Corporation to hasten the implementation of the Rs 295 crore waste to energy treatment plant at Brahmapuram, it is still groping in the dark. Though the agency agreed to complete the project in 18 months, a difference of opinion among the councillors has blocked any progress. The project remains a non-starter.

Ro-Ro vessel

Even after the Corporation got two Ro-Ro vessels and a 150-seater passenger ferry service built, the question over when they will begin the services is yet to be answered. The Corporation has failed to set a time frame for the construction of a mooring facility at Fort Kochi. Though the council had decided to entrust the operation of the ferry service to KSINC, a final decision is yet to be arrived at.

Safe shelter for women still in cold storage

Even after the Kochi Corporation decided to convert Hotel Libra, where evictees from the banks of T P Canal had been lodged, into a night shelter, an official decision is yet to come. According to the plan, the lodge was to be converted into a night shelter using private funds and with the assistance of Kerala Urban Rural Development Corporation. But according to the opposition, further discussions are yet to be initiated. If the project becomes a reality people will not have to cough up hefty amounts to book rooms in the city.

Broadway continues to choke

Plans were made, assurances were given and deadlines set. But seven months later, Broadway continues to choke thanks to the usual all words and no action motto of the politicians and bureaucrats. Mayor Soumini Jain who had promised - days after assuming the office - to make the iconic trading street of Kochi into a ‘friendly walking plaza’ seems to have developed amnesia. Multi-level parking was another assurance made by the mayor. The project was planned as part of the Central Government-funded Smart City project. However, no special plans have been included in the Smart City project.

Dangling cable menace.

The cables that hang like a hangman’s noose along the roads posing threat to the motorist and pedestrians alike are yet to be removed.

Smart City Mission a joke

Even after the appointment of the Project Management Consultant for the Smart City Mission, the project is yet to get off the starting blocks. Though the DPR revision took place a few months back, no tenders have been invited. According to the Corporation, over 80 projects had been identified in 2015 when the city was shortlisted under the Smart City Mission. Kochi stood fifth among the 20 Smart Cities. However, the city has failed to keep up the momentum due to lack of planning and proper guidance.

Opposition version

“Due to the lackadaisical attitude of the Corporation authorities, plan fund amounting to Rs 137 crore still remains unutilized. Using the Amrut project, the Corporation could have implemented many proposals but it has done nothing. The septage treatment plant at Brahmapuram almost looks like a scarecrow. The mayor is always interested in being in the limelight. She is not keen on implementing pending projects,” said V P Chandran, Opposition councillor.

Aiming a comprehensive development

“We are aiming for a comprehensive development of the city. The delay in implementing some of the projects was not deliberate. Most of the projects are nearing implementation stage and will be finalised within a few months. The opposition is making false allegations,” T J Vinodh, deputy mayor said.

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Autor(en)/Author(s): Anilkumar T

Quelle/Source: The New Indian Express, 20.11.2017

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