PUDUCHERRY: In an apparent dig at Puducherry Lt. Governor Kiran Bedi, Chief Minister V Narayanasamy today claimed that there were some people who were trying to "block development" projects in the union territory.
The projects include one related to the development of the port and the scientific disposal of solid waste, Narayanasamy said.
Bedi had alleged that there were irregularities in the port development project and that it would pose a threat to the environment.
Narayanawamy said that when development work was in progress to make it a satellite port of the Chennai Port Trust, a group of persons had tried to "stall" its implementation.
The government would take all steps to counter the objection as the development of the port would have benefits, including generating jobs and promoting industrial activities, the chief minister said.
"We want to generate employment, strengthen the financial position of the government and ensure that Puducherry emerges as a top-ranking Union Territory," he said.
"There are at the same time some groups of persons trying to block development," Narayanasamy said, without naming anybody, after inaugurating a two-month long awareness programme on sustainable solid waste management here.
The programme is being organised by the Department of Science, Technology and Environment in association with Pondicherry University.
The Lt. Governor has been at loggerheads with the Congress government on many issues, including the port development.
Narayansamy said that the government was providing a subsidy of Rs 20,000 to each household without toilet facilities.
"Our goal is that the entire Union Territory should emerge as open defecation-free by 2018," the chief minister said.
The Mahe region is open defecation-free and the T R Pattinam block in Karaikal was another segment that had achieved the goal, he said.
For implementing the Operation Garbage scheme in association with private players, the government has earmarked Rs 1.87 crore in Puducherry, Narayansamy said.
People should be aware and segregate garbage under bio degradable and non-degradable categories at their houses, he said, adding that several organisations from the US, Germany and the country have come forward to convert garbage into bio-fertiliser.
"This scheme of the government is now facing hurdles," he said, but did not elaborate.
The chief minister claimed that vested interests were opposed to the Puducherry's development, and also wanted the Union Territory to be "static" and "backward".
The government has also planned to ban plastic materials and a decision will be taken in the next few months after consulting voluntary organisations and other stakeholders, Welfare Minister M Kandasamy said.
Deputy Speaker V P Sivakolundhu and Secretary to the Department of Science and Technology, Puducherry, Mehru Vardhan were among those who spoke on the need to create a 'Clean Puducherry'.