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Development hits Roadblock, Graft Charges Rise in Corpn

Mayor accused of arbitrary functioning; standing committees not at all convened

Published: 13th September 2014 06:03 AM  |   Last Updated: 13th September 2014 06:03 AM   |  A+A-

VELLORE: The defunct standing committees, poor administration and alleged high-handedness of persons holding top positions in the administration of Vellore Corporation have been hampering the developments of Fort City to the core.

The Corporation has not witnessed any major development since the new council assumed charge under Mayor P Karthiyayini in 2011. On the contrary, it is flooded with corruption charges from procuring dust bins to sinking borewells, said a cross section of people. of Vellore.

There are six committees- health, education, estimation, appointment, town planning and taxation and accounts—in the Corporation. The committees have statutory power. The committee should convene meeting every 15 days, to review and take decisions about development works.  As per the Tamil Nadu Ordinance No 6 2008 and The Coimbatore City Municipal Corporation Act 1981, which is followed by Vellore Corporation, the Commissioner should obtain the Administration Sanction (AS) order from respective committees, for works between `30 lakh and `50 lakh before placing it in council. “Not getting the AS from committee is a clear case of violation of rules. But it is happening here,” said a Contract Committee member.

A member of the Health Committee said,“The committee members have no role to play. Everything is decided by Mayor Karthiyayini, Commissioner Janaki Raveendran and City Health Inspector Vasanth Diwakar.”  There is no meaning in existence of the committees, which never met for a meeting till date, he said adding, “The Mayor is taking the calls without consulting committees.”

A year ago, a total of 24 out of the 33 AIADMK councillors filed a complaint against the Mayor, to the party’s four-member inquiry committee headed by minister O Panneerselvam. They let the Mayor with a stern warning but still she is continuing in the old fashion, said an AIADMK councillor.

“The rules and regulations are thrown to winds here. The officials are like puppets. The strings are pulled from one end and officials are acting accordingly,” said a Accounts Committee member. Councillor of 34th ward K Srinivasa Gandhi also aired similar views.

Education Committee president K Suriya Achari,  had recently openly levelled charges against the Mayor that she was taking decisions independently. “The Mayor’s husband (Anush Kumar) was also indulging in administration. They are running the administration like family affairs,” he said.

Pointing out at the recent borewell works taken at a cost of `1.42 Cr, an official said, “Over 50 per cent of the funds went to councillors’ pockets and people leading them. Most councillors are mute spectators for their personal gains.” However, Mayor Karthiyayini denied her husband’s involvement in administration adding,  “My husband is coming to  Corporation for my safety.”

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