The Pattabiraman road that sustained damage during underground drainage
(UGD) work in Tiruchy
The Pattabiraman road that sustained damage during underground drainage (UGD) work in Tiruchy Photo | M K Ashok Kumar

Deadline missed, but underground drainage work in Tiruchy not an election issue: DMK

Pointing out that UGD work commenced during the AIADMK regime in 2019, a senior DMK member said.

TIRUCHY: Even as the DMK goes around highlighting the projects taken up by the party-led council to canvass votes this general election, concerns emerge among a section of functionaries that the delay in completing underground drainage (UGD) works, which commenced about five years ago, would be raked up by rival parties to play spoilsport.

Senior party workers, however, dismissed them, blaming the AIADMK for much of the delay and reasoned that the latter would hence be silent on the issue.

Pointing out that UGD work commenced during the AIADMK regime in 2019, a senior DMK member said, “The DMK-led council took charge in 2022. We then found that of the total 858 km of the UGD network, contractors had not even completed work on 100 km. Now the situation is different, and we have completed about 95% of Phase III work. We also completed blacktopping several roads that were damaged during UGD work.

Therefore, the delay in UGD work would only affect the AIADMK as it did nothing to speed up work during its rule." Attempting to justify the delay in UGD work completion during the AIADMK regime, a party worker said, "We were not able to undertake much work during 2020 and 2021 due to the [Covid-19] pandemic.

The Pattabiraman road that sustained damage during underground drainage
(UGD) work in Tiruchy
Residents question Tiruchy corporation's claims to have completed 85% of underground drainage work

We hence cannot be blamed for the situation." In several corporation council meetings held in the past, the AIADMK tried to criticise the DMK-led council for pushing the deadline for UGD work several times. While the deadline for Phase III of the UGD work alone was deferred seven times, the mayor argued back at the opposition by tabling the progress of work done since the new council took charge.

Sources said that AIADMK workers campaigning in the city are thus avoiding playing up the fact that the DMK-led council missed the March 31 deadline for completion of Phase III UGD work. Meanwhile, Palaniswamy R, a resident of WB Road, on the matter said, "Almost all roads in the city were damaged during the AIADMK regime.

Now, most major roads are in good condition as UGD work has been sped up. Though Phase III work is delayed in some areas, the situation is comparatively better during the DMK regime." JS Ramdass of Woraiyur said, "UGD work may not make a big impact in the election as the AIADMK is silent on the local issue. They know that the DMK did a better job than them. However, the DMK-led council should avoid further delay in finishing Phase III UGD work."

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