Friday, August 13, 2010

Down the memory lane: Udupi Municipal Council 1968

Udupi CMC turns 75
As Udupi CMC ushers into a new era, celebrating its platinum Manjushree G Naik (DHNS) retrospects the path marched by CMC

Udupi City Municipal Corporation is on the landmark of celebrating its platinum jubilee celebrations this year. Set up on April 1, 1935, the CMC has seen many ups and downs.
Udupi CMC has a long treasured pre independence history. The then Madras government declared Udupi Town Municipal Corporation open with mere 7 villages under its jurisdiction. It was later transformed into City Municipal Corporation in the year 1995 with 35 wards under its jurisdiction and a population of 17,251. The TMC held the polls for its first President in the year 1936 and Advocate Arooru Laxminarayan Rao, a Congressman was elected in the polls. TMC started working in the Taluk Board building with 12 wards in the beginning.

The transition

The transition phase for the TMC began in 1969 under the leadership of the then President Dr V S Acharya. Many innovative ideas were introduced during his time. Dr V S Acharya adorned the post for two terms from 1969 to 1977. Dr Acharya’s remarkable decision of banning human scavengers bagged him huge appreciation and recognition. During his period, measures to develop drinking water facilities was introduced. The foundation stone for new building of TMC was performed by the then President V V Giri. Many basic civic amenities were introduced. Many traffic circles and bus shelters were built. For the first time in the history of Udupi, the concept of underground drainage system was introduced during this period. Innovative financial ideas were adopted by Dr Acharya. The idea of street lights, sanitation, health and other basic infrastructural facilities were slowly initiated. Swarna drinking water project started working in the year 1972.

Udupi TMC has been awarded twice with sanitation honour between 1984 and 1989. M Somashekhar Bhat was the president during these years. TMC celebrated its silver jubilee celebrations under the presidentship of Dr K L Aithal in 1960. The golden jubilee celebrations were held in 1984. The transformation of TMC to CMC extended the limits of CMC to 68.23 kms in the year 1995 as against 9.6 kms of its control. Leena Christina Isaac became the first president of Udupi City Municipal Corporation.

Mega projects

Between 1997 and 2001, Udupi CMC undertook many development programmes. Mega projects introducing all round infrastructural development of the city were initiated with the investment of crores of rupees. The financial assistance was offered by Asian Development Bank under Karnataka City Development and Coastal Maintenance Project. Anandi was the president at this time. The concept of civic infrastructural amenities like drinking water, underground drainage system, housing facilities, health and sanitation were given additional progress along with new development programmes like parking lots, commercial complexes, measures boosting tourism ventures etc.

Udupi CMC at present has a fabulous network of resource collection of crores of rupess as against the collection of Rs 26,892 in the year 1936.

The CMC provided housing facilities to the civic labourers. It has the recognition of introducing cent per cent water metres in the city.

Plans ahead

Speaking to City Herald, CMC President Dinaker Shetty informed that the CMC has elaborate plans to beautify the city to commemorate the platinum jubilee celebrations. “e-governance has been introduced in the offices of CMC in recent years. Almost every road within the city limits are four-laned. Efforts are being made to provide non-stop drinking water facilities to the public. Exclusive underground drainage system has been built at a cost of Rs 31 crore. Traffic system is designed to be less hazardous supported with street lights and blinkers. Hi-tech bus stops have been added to beautify the city. Attempts are made to introduce parks, gardens and play grounds wherever essential within the city,” he said. At present, Udupi CMC is topping the list of index involving the development parameters at city level across the State. The year long platinum jubilee celebrations will be culminated with the State-level convention of the local bodies. Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa will deliver the valedictory address on the occasion.

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