Panel visit: 'Drought relief work' displayed in Kodagu

The City Municipal Council (CMC) authorities are said to have felled trees and laid road to create an impression of ‘drought relief work’ being undertaken at Pampinakere when a Cabinet Sub-committee on drought review visited the district on Sunday.

Pampinakere supplies water to four wards in the CMC limits. As the monsoon failed last year, the Pampinakere was not full and the water level depleted with the failure of pre-monsoon showers.

In the backdrop of the committee’s visit, labourers were asked to take up the desiltation work of the tank. Two days prior to the visit, an earth mover was used for laying a road to reach Pampinakere. The earthmover was parked near the tank when the committee visited the spot. Even the labourers were engaged in clearing the weeds grown around the tank. However, when Deccan Herald visited the spot at 11.30 am on Tuesday, the earthmover and the labourers were ‘missing’. The ‘drought-relief work’ had come to a halt. 

Residents alleged, “To inspect the drought, the Cabinet Sub-committee should have visited the rural areas. What was the need for visiting the water body which supplies water to the town? The work on removing the silt has also not been continued. There were few trees beside the water body. In the name of laying road for the committee’s visit, the trees have also been felled.”

After inspecting the tank, the ministers, who were the members of the committee, directed the officials to complete the desiltation work of the tank before the onset of monsoon. District-in-Charge Minister Dinesh Gundu Rao directed the officials to complete the work within 15 days.

The CMC officials had said that the tank repair work is being taken up at a cost of Rs 18 lakh.

When contacted, CMC President Shreemathi Bangera said, “Contractors have been directed to complete the repair work within 10 days. I had visited the spot on Monday along with assistant engineer. There is no question of suspension of work. To remove the silt, five foot water needs to be removed. Once the water level depletes, the repair work will commence.”

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