Probe Panneerselvam for poor building construction: TN NGO


NGO Arappor Iyakkam on Friday demanded registration of an FIR against the officials of the Tamil Nadu Slum Clearance Board (TNSCB) and the contractor who had built the residential apartments at K.P. Park, Pulianthope here, for poor construction.

Demanding a probe against the former Chief Minister and AIADMK Coordinator O. Panneerselvam’s role, it also said that the poor quality should be documented and the FIR registered before any repair work is done.

Meanwhile, P.S.T. Engineering Construction Managing Partner V.S. Thennarasu, in an advertisement, said the residential apartments were used as Covid-19 centres and damaged by movement of healthcare equipment.

He also said the construction firm had followed all procedures and the construction quality was supervised and certified by the TNSCB officials.

A total of 864 apartments were built at an outlay of Rs 112.60 crore. The construction work began in 2018 and was completed in 2019 when the AIADMK was in power.

The poor quality of construction has come to light as wall plastering falls down with a mere tapping and the lofts can be broken with bare hands.

According to Arappor Iyakkam, the engineer responsible for quality and the third party responsible for quality adherence giving a certificate shows collusion with the building contractor.

NGO Convenor Jayaram Venkatesan said that the TNSCB, till date, has not divulged the name of the contractor, name of the third parties appointed to check and certify the construction quality, completion report and payment details to the contractor.

He also said the structural stability and the building quality should be checked by the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras (IIT-M).

If the structure is unsafe, then all the buildings should be razed and new ones should be built so that fatal accidents could be avoided in the future, Venkatesan said.

The state government has asked the IIT-M and the Anna University to check all the buildings built during the last 10 years of the AIADMK rule for construction quality, adding that it will take action against the officials and the contractor if they are at fault.

Meanwhile, Thennarasu said the construction work began after the Department of Structural Engineering, Anna University studied the building’s structural design and with the consent of the TNSCB.

He said the constructed buildings were handed over to the TNSCB and the latter’s engineers have given certificates about the construction being completed as per the contract terms.

He also said the TNSCB officials had inspected the construction on a daily basis and twice a week by the private engineers appointed by the Board.

The ultimate beneficiaries who were living near the construction site also came and inspected the building construction, he said.

Thennarasu said the buildings were used as Covid-19 treatment centres by the Greater Chennai Corporation for a year. The movement of various machines and equipment had damaged the building.

He also said the people in their anger for not getting the apartment allocation had damaged and stolen various items. A police complaint has been lodged by the TNSCB officials.

Thennarasu also blamed competition for instigating the people to damage the building so that the TNSCB would allot them the apartments without demanding Rs 150,000 as consideration.

He also warned of defamation suits against those who damage his firm’s reputation.