Civic Body Fails to Utilise Slum Development Fund
Sources said the construction work for 410 houses out of 474 has been started so far. While 197 houses have been completed, 124 houses are under construction and there is no whereabouts of 153 houses
Sep 02, 2014
Source : The New Indian Express
Integrated Housing and Slum Development Program


BARIPADA: Hundreds of beneficiaries of Integrated Housing and Slum Development Programme (IHSDP) living in the slum areas under Baripada Municipality limits have expressed their concern over slow progress of work under the programme. They apprehend that the funds sanctioned for construction of their houses may return without being utilised.

According to sources, following the request of former Collector V Karthikeyan Pandian for funds under the programme for infrastructure development projects including housing and sanitation in the slum areas, the Centre had sanctioned `4.5 crore to build 410 houses.

As per the Collector’s proposal, a committee had shortlisted 474 BPL beneficiaries in Baghadiha, Ramchandrapur, Bhugudakuta, Taraki, Sriramchandrapur, Tulasichaura, Deula Sahi, Raghunathpur, Purnachandrapur and Sungaria slums in February 2009. More than 167 beneficiaries were selected from Purnachandrapur alone.

Though the deadline to complete the project was fixed for December, 2010, construction of only half of the houses has been finished. The funds were routed though the State Government. Now the civic body fears that rest of the funds will return if the houses are not completed in next couple of months.

constructed on 25 square metre of land with drinking water, electrification and sanitation facilities. Each beneficiary had to deposit `11,000 along with required documents of the land to avail the grant of `1.10 lakh for the construction of the house.

The sources said the construction work for 410 houses out of 474 has been started so far. While 197 houses have been completed, 124 houses are under construction and there is no whereabouts of 153 houses. The municipal authorities, however, claim that due to escalation of material cost, it is impossible to construct the houses with the given fund limits.

A resident Babulal Senapati alleged that though he had deposited `11,000 as per the norms, his house is left half constructed for the last four years. “The contractor did not take any step for the completion of the house. I have repeatedly met the Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the Municipality. They have given me assurance. But, I am sacred as fund is likely to return if the construction is not completed on time”, he said.

It was alleged that no contractor was willing to take up the project as the incumbent Chairman and other officials of the municipality demanded bribe for awarding the work.

Vice-Chairman of the Municipality Jitendra Mohanty said he would take up the matter with the Executive Officer (EO) to find a solution so that the fund will not return. EO Antaryami Panda also assured of looking into the matter and complete the project on priority basis.

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