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Funds nod for civic projects

Funds were sanctioned on Tuesday for two key projects of the Calcutta Municipal Corporation — repair and restoration of the Tallah tank and an alternative dumping yard at Rajarhat. The clearance came in the nick of time before Lok Sabha election dates are announced.

The Union urban development ministry cleared the projects under the JNNURM scheme, granting Rs 67 crore for overhauling the Tallah tank and Rs 153 crore for the dumping ground in Rajarhat. A portion of the funds would be used for solid waste management by procuring compactor machines to replace open, and often overflowing, vats across the city.

“The Centre would be provide 35 per cent of the funds, while the state and the CMC would pitch in with 35 per cent and 30 per cent respectively,” an official said.

Sources said municipal commissioner Khalil Ahmed met Union urban development secretary Sudhir Krishna when he was in the city on Saturday, urging for clearance of the two projects before election dates are announced. “The clearance could be the result of this parley with Krishna,” an official said.

Metro had earlier reported that Tallah tank, an engineering marvel that has been quenching the city’s thirst for over a century, faces a threat to its structural stability because of air pollution.

Sources said the CMC has identified 20 acres in Rajarhat for a dumping ground. A compactor, CMC insiders said, can hold 70 cart-loads of waste. Four lorries would be needed to carry that much waste.

Customs

Customs officers seized 80 kg of khat, a flowering plant grown in Somalia, Ethiopia and Yemen, parts of which are used as drugs, from two passengers at Calcutta airport on Monday night. Nizamuddin Sheikh and Mohammed Asif, both residents of Kidderpore, were about to board a flight to Kunming.

The duo said they were to hand over the leaves to someone in China.

Examinee ill

A Madhyamik student fell ill while writing his physical science examination at Ashok Nagar Vidyapith in Tollygunge. Chandan Sharma complained of abdominal pain and was admitted to hospital. Chandan Sharma was taken to MR Bangur hospital.