Ho­tel stopped PWD of­fi­cials from prob­ing en­croach­ments?

The New Indian Express - - CHENNAI -

AMIDST com­plaints from ac­tivists that only peo­ple from in­for­mal set­tle­ments were treated as ‘en­croach­ers’ and evicted, the Pub­lic Works Department’s (PWD) at­tempts to in­spect a pri­vate es­tab­lish­ment in Koy­ambedu un­der the Cooum Restora­tion Project, suf­fered a set­back as the of­fi­cials were al­legedly de­nied en­try by the ho­tel man­age­ment.

Ac­cord­ing to PWD of­fi­cials, the Shan Royal ho­tel in Koy­ambedu has il­le­gally ex­tended its bound­ary by about 40 feet on the banks of the Cooum. “The ho­tel’s laun­dry unit is right on the banks of Cooum and has also been re­leas­ing sewage into the river,” said an of­fi­cial who was part of the in­spec­tion team.

The team of three PWD of­fi­cials that con­sisted of an As­sis­tant En­gi­neer and two Work In­spec­tors, vis­ited the premises on Fri­day morn­ing, where the of­fi­cial said that they were ‘hu­mil­i­ated’ and sent away with­out be­ing al­lowed to carry out the in­spec­tion.

Mem­bers of the ho­tel’s man­age­ment de­nied the allegations.

“We had al­ready told the PWD that the laun­dry unit was va­cated and that we are ready to hand it over. The ar­gu­ment broke out af­ter one of the three mem­bers in the in­spec­tion team mis­be­haved with our staff,” said a se­nior mem­ber of the man­age­ment.

“The said laun­dry unit is not a part of our prop­erty but it was un­der use and we va­cated it af­ter the no­tice was is­sued,” he added. The no­tice was is­sued to the es­tab­lish­ment 15 days ago.

State Gov­ern­ment agen­cies have been ac­tively in­volved in the evic­tion of in­for­mal set­tle­ments along the Cooum un­der the Chennai Rivers Restora­tion Trust with around 350 fam­i­lies along the wa­ter­body evicted and re­set­tled in the last two weeks.

MARTIN LOUIS

Ho­tel that al­legedly de­nied en­try for in­spec­tion of en­croach­ment |

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