ERODE: Following complaints from the public and activists, the Erode Corporation has ordered to stop the operation of electronic amusement games illegally installed at the VOC park and also cut electricity supply to them.
VOC Park, the biggest park in the city spread across 8.59 acres, was renovated at the cost of Rs 6.42 crore to attract visitors and improve revenue under the Smart City project. Under the funds, fountains and playing equipment were installed and the seating capacity was also increased in the park.
After the renovation was completed in April this year, the Corporation floated tenders for collection of entry fees at VOC park and children's park for `4 lakh each for three years from 2021 to 2024. After the parks were opened after the lockdown, the contractor installed more than five electronic amusement games at the park and collected `30 for rides in each.
While the tender only was for the collection of entry fees, the contractor without any permission installed electronic rides and collected separate charges, said sources, adding they also drew electricity illegally from the office room in the park.
"This is a huge loss of revenue to the Corporation. The entry fee for the park was increased gradually from Rs 2. The public has been looted for nearly six months. The contractor could not have earned without the knowledge of Corporation officials. The contract should be cancelled immediately," said Valli Narayanan, RTI activist.
Following complaints, corporation officials issued a notice to the contractor and asked to clear the electronic rides. The electricity has also been cut off and further action will be decided soon, added officials.