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Master Plan

Master plan to renovate Coimbatore Medical College Hospital soon

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The Hindu 20.11.2009

Master plan to renovate Coimbatore Medical College Hospital soon

Staff Reporter

Centenary celebrations committee begins preliminary work

Photo: M. Periasamy

PLANNING IN PROGRESS: Rural Industries Minister Pongalur N. Palanisamy (second left) having a word with Collector P. Umanath on Thursday at a meeting organised to plan the centenary celebrations of the Coimbatore Medical College Hospital. —

Coimbatore: The Coimbatore Medical College Hospital (CMCH) Centenary Celebrations committee has decided to evolve a master plan to modernise and renovate the hospital besides carrying out improvements.

The centenary celebrations organising committee led by Rural Industries Minister, Pongalur N. Palanisamy, Mayor R. Venkatachalam and District Collector, P. Umanath held a meeting on Thursday to seek suggestions.

The hospital opened its doors on July 14, 1909 and entered the centenary year on July 14, 2008.

The CMCH was represented by Veerakesari (Dean in-charge), Resident Medical Officer, P. Sivaprakasam and Assistant Resident Medical Officer, R. Soundaravel.

Committee members C.R. Swaminathan, Chief Executive Officer of PSG Institutions, and Ashwin Thakkar, President, Coimbatore Gujarat Samaj were among those who participated.

Collector pointed out that bed capacity availability never matches with the requirement. Ninety per cent of the outpatients mainly come only to the three departments.

He said that the buildings constructed by the Government and those sponsored by organisations such as Lions and Rotary have turned the hospital into one with a lot of fragmented buildings.

“We need to evolve a master plan identifying the requirements, modernisation and renovations and plan the construction of the new building with a holistic plan.”

Some departments do not have adequate patients for the available bed capacity but some faculties of medicine get overcrowded.

There is a need to take into account the total number of additional beds that are required at the hospital and plan for the same.

Funds may not be a problem and a proposal for funds could be sent to the Government.

Mr. Umanath pointed out that in proposals sent to the Government in the past, there had been no proposal for Coimbatore and CMCH never figured in financial allocation.

Mr.Umanath also sought focus on departments that witness an inflow of more patients rather than concentrating on just niche areas of medical care.

He said a tower block could be constructed, preventing the fragmentation of connected departments.

Mayor, R. Venkatachalam said that the future constructions and facilities need to be done with foresight, keeping in mind the growing population. He promised to provide all possible assistance from the Corporation.

Mr.Umanath said that the previous Collector, Neeraj Mittal had mobilised Rs. 36 lakh funds from philanthropists which was yet to be utilised.

The Collector suggested that either a portion of this or the entire fund could be made seed capital and the remaining funds could be sourced from the Government.

He also asked the engineers to evolve plans for avoiding waterlogging of the hospital.

In addition to this, he wanted the committee members to identify resources for creating facilities such as shelter, waiting room and parking facilities for visitors which were crying needs and basic requirements.

Last Updated on Friday, 20 November 2009 01:30

Chennai low on livable city index

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The New Indian Express 01.09.2009

Chennai low on livable city index


The Second Master Plan for Chennai Metropolitan Area-2026 was notified by Government of Tamil Nadu in September 2008. The Chennai Metropolitan Development Authority had earlier published its draft in April 2007. According to this, the projected population of Chennai city would be 5.9 million and Chennai Metropolitan Area 12.5 million by 2026.

The Master Plan’s ‘Vision 2026’ aims to make Chennai a “prime metropolis which will be more livable, economically vibrant and environmentally sustainable, and with better assets for the future generations.”

The objective of Chennai’s urban plan therefore is to “provide the citizens a better quality of life through environmentally sustainable, economically progressive, technologically innovative, proactive, development oriented urban planning and management policies, programmes and practices with equitable public participation,” and not just real-estate oriented big-ticket projects and structures.

It is in this context that one should look at Mercer’s worldwide ‘livability ranking’. Mercer is the global leader for trusted human resource and related advice, products and services. Their ‘Quality of Living Survey’ annually ranks world’s cities by evaluating local living conditions based on 39 factors, grouped in 10 categories.

These are: political and social environment (political stability, crime, law enforcement); economic environment (currency exchange regulations, banking services); socio-cultural environment (censorship, limitations on personal freedom); health and sanitation (medical supplies and services, infectious diseases, sewage, waste disposal, air pollution); schools and education (standard and availability of quality schools); public services and transportation (electricity, water, public transport, traffic congestion); recreation (restaurants, theatres, cinemas, sports and leisure); consumer goods (availability of food/daily consumption items, cars); housing (housing, household appliances, furniture, maintenance services) and natural environment (climate, record of natural disasters).

For 2008, Mercer ranked 215 cities worldwide. Chennai was 152nd - at the bottom among Indian cities. Bangalore was ahead at 142nd place, followed by Delhi at 145 and Mumbai at 148. Apparently, Chennai, which aspires to be a ‘Global-city’ through the real-estate route, is way down the ladder on the global ‘livability’ standards by which urban settlements are judged.

The SC had earlier (Dec 2006) castigated the city thus: “The whole city of Chennai is now unlivable because you allowed unauthorised constructions to flourish in violation of all building laws. Let the people live in peace. Let there be some discipline.” Though this stricture was issued in the context of the State Government protecting those who indulge in gross violation of building rules and regulations, it does apply in a general sense to the livability and quality of life in Chennai.

Let us look at it from the perspective of just three of the 10 categories listed by Mercer - health and sanitation; schools and education; and housing. Though trumpeted as the ‘healthcare capital of India’, the state of health and sanitation in the city is near dismal. Though for the well-heeled there are star-hospitals run as corporate profit centres, the poor are left in the lurch even for basic healthcare services. Accessing government hospitals and its competent doctors are traumatic experiences for those without money or influence. At every stage corruption is rampant. As for preventive care, it practically does not exist.

Regarding sanitation, less said the better. One look at the appalling state of the city’s slushy slums, garbage-ridden lanes, stinking waterways, rotting vegetable markets, and un-hygienic fish/meat stalls can speak volumes of the dirt and filth that exists. Open defecation and urination, even by women, that takes place on the city’s roads and streets, river banks, beaches and railway tracks is a shame for any civilised society!

Coming to schools and education, it has become a money-power game. In the garb of privatising education, unfettered commercialisation has crept into this sphere. The quality of schools, barring exceptions, is low both in learning and sport. Character building and lessons in honesty and integrity have become a rarity. There is huge disparity between the standards of education available to the rich, middle-class and the poor. Infrastructure and facilities available in most of the government and corporation schools is near dismal. Most of the private schools are no more than rote-based ‘teaching’ shops.

Housing deficit among poorer and economically disadvantaged sections is huge and their environmental condition is worsening by the day. Public housing and rehabilitation agencies - Housing Board and Slum Clearance Board - are operating in an impersonal and sometimes inhuman manner, often stuck on ‘tokenism’. The private sector is uninterested in housing for the poor and low-income groups and rental housing for this segment is almost non-existent. With the urban land beyond the reach of the low-income, the non-affluent and non-privileged groups, the housing crisis is simmering.

There is nothing wrong in aspiring to become a ‘Global-city’. But first things first and that is ‘quality of life and livability’. This is where tax-payers money should go.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 01 September 2009 01:46

Zoo master plan amended

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The Hindu 27.08.2009

Zoo master plan amended

Staff Reporter

It has been forwarded to Central Zoo Authority for approval

TIRUCHI: The State Forest Department has amended the comprehensive master plan of Tiruchi zoological park that is to come up inside the sprawling Reserve Forest in M.R. Palayam, a few kilometres from the city, and forwarded the document to the Central Zoo Authority (CZA) for approval.

The amended plan contains certain additional features which the Forest Department has proposed to create in a portion of the area set aside for “future development” of the zoo which will come up in a total area of 63 hectares along the Tiruchi-Chennai national highway.

The original master plan sent a few months ago to the CZA had set aside 15 hectares for “future development” of the “medium zoo” which is to be set up with funds provided by the State government and the CZA.

The CZA, a statutory body under the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests, had sought from the State Forest Department the type of facilities it proposed to create in the area set aside for future development of the zoo.

Based on this, the Department incorporated additional features in the master plan and forwarded it to the CZA a few days ago along with the revised layout plan of the zoo through the Chief Wild Life Warden, Chennai.

Under the amended plan, the Department has proposed for establishment of a Nocturnal Animals House; boating facility; solid waste treatment plant; disaster management centre; captive breeding centre of locally endangered species and a veterinary research and forensic laboratory in the area earmarked for “future development” of the zoo, says Divisional Forest Officer, Social Forestry Division, Tiruchi Deepak Srivasthava who was entrusted with the task of preparing the master plan.

The full-fledged disaster management centre will take care of emergencies such as flooding, outbreak of fire, escape of wild animals and drought situation inside the zoo. Every enclosure inside the zoo is proposed to be fitted with emergency alarms and connected to the disaster management centre, says Mr. Srivasthava.

In addition to carrying out research activities, the veterinary research and forensic lab will also probe the cause of death of animals.

Over 500 animals

The zoo will house over 500 animals and birds of 39 species.

The waste treatment plant would treat all liquid and solid wastes generated in the zoo and recycled. The Department has proposed an expenditure of Rs. 3.6 crore for the creation of these additional facilities, he added.

A sum of nearly Rs. 65 crore has been proposed for setting up the zoo and its maintenance for five years. The CZA will provide 100 per cent funds for activities relating to animal housing, its upkeep and veterinary care.

Last Updated on Thursday, 27 August 2009 05:51

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