Kerala Kaumudi Online
Friday, 14 June 2024 8.13 AM IST

Minister reveals identity of 'accused'


In a recent meeting held in Thiruvananthapuram, Minister V Sivankutty revealed the name of the 'accused' responsible for the lackadaisical Smart City Roads construction work, which is yet to reach completion albeit starting work six months ago. In the officials' meeting held the other day seeking an immediate solution to the severe waterlogging, the Minister publicly named the accused responsible: 'Lack of coordination of government departments!'

The drains in the capital city are owned and managed by the Public Works Department, Road Fund Board, Municipal Corporation, Railways, Irrigation Department, Inland Water Transport and many other departments. Only a few drains owned by the maintenance department and the municipality have been cleaned so far. It seems like the other departments are living blindfolded to not recognise the mess that the city is now during the harsh monsoon.

If the officials of the concerned departments had teamed up at least once a month and prepared a plan, the city would not have been embroiled in the waterlogging mess. It is a norm that formulation of development plans and paperwork will be done in one department while the duty to implement all this is the responsibility of some other department.

Take the example of road tarring. The day after the maintenance department completes a road repair and tarring, the KSEB will excavate it to install the electricity post or lay the cable. The water authority will dig up the road for pipeline work. There is some serious lapse in the communication between myriads of departments which has arguably torn apart the capital city, adding to the worry of city residents. People are destined to be silent witnesses to such ridiculous acts, while some also fall victim to the aggravated traffic snarls and the accidents that come along with it.

If there had been effective communication and bureaucratic coordination between these departments, such embarrassments could have been nipped in the bud. Another idea is for the ministers of the departments and heads of institutions to form an official committee for the coordination and monitoring of the development works. People here in power are not used to such meticulous work and care less about the distress affecting people. However, the same elites in power would bemoan the crisis and would play a political demagoguery of ‘new promises’ to win back their prized seat in the next elections.

The inert attitude of the government has crippled the city to its worst. At least the concerned departments should be prepared to come together, discuss the urgent issue affecting the people, and fix the schedule for the construction works considering the weather conditions. And now, one minister has successfully found the ‘accused’. A trial should follow soon.

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