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NKDA-crowned New Town blocks & complexes pad up for Covid war

The chosen associations are toppers in a contest organised by New Town Kolkata Development Authority
NKDA chief Debashis Sen fetes representatives of gated community winner Uniworld City

Shatadipa Bhattacharya   |   Salt Lake   |   Published 09.04.21, 05:16 AM

Another wave of Covid is spreading and cases are on the rise. The Telegraph Salt Lake spoke to three model blocks and housing complexes each from New Town to learn how they plan to tackle the situation.

The chosen associations are toppers in a contest organised by New Town Kolkata Development Authority (NKDA), that ranked them on the basis of criteria such as Covid awareness, cleanliness and eco-friendly steps.


The contest begun in October last year and the results were announced on March 31. “Our intention is to build a friendly, healthy and sustainable township but for that we need the support of the residents,” said Debashis Sen, chairman of NKDA.

The second edition of the contest has begun — from April 1, 2021 to March 31, 2022. Here is what the winners of the maiden edition had to say —

Gated communities

Rank: First

Complex: Uniworld City

Prize money: Rs 25,000 

Their effort: “We are an 18-month-old association so there was a lot to do from scratch. Besides greenery and cleanliness, we took multiple steps to segregate our waste,” said vice-president Bimal Kumar Sarkar.

Covid precautions then: Even before the lockdown they had stopped their senior citizens from going out. A team of volunteers delivered essential items to them. They arranged vegetable, fruit and meat vendors to come and sell inside the complex so residents would not have to step out.

Active Covid cases: Two families

Covid precautions now: “We are taking steps as per the demand of the situation,” said Sarkar. “We have installed hand-washing facilities and kept sanitisers under every tower.”

Rank: Second

Complex: Sunrise Point

Prize money: Rs15, 000

Their effort: “We have a lot of greenery. We also reduced the use of plastic bags and installed solar panels. We plan to implement solid waste segregation this year,” said secretary Gobinda Biswas.

Covid precautions then: They had built a team to reach supplies to the doorsteps of senior citizens. They also provided their security guards with six months’ worth of kitchen supplies so they could stay in the complex.

Active Covid cases: Two

Covid precautions now: “We have kept aside a lift exclusively for domestic helps as they come from outside and could spread the virus,” said Biswas.

Rank: Third

Complex: Alaktika

Prize money: Rs 10,000

Their effort: “We are planning to install solar panels and will invest more in rain water harvesting,” said joint secretary Arabindo Adhikary.

Covid precautions then: They were particular about sanitisation and temperature check at their gates and replaced stage events during the Pujas with online ones.

Active Covid cases: Nil

Covid precautions now: “We are tightening rules again, especially about compulsory sanitisation and mask-wearing at the gates,” said Adhikary. “We have also kept an oxygen cylinder on standby for emergency.”


Rank: First

Block: BA

Prize money: Rs 25, 000 

Their effort: “We push residents to give up plastic, plant trees annually and keep our locality clean,” said secretary Prabir Mazumder.

Covid precautions then: They helped the needy in the block with food and sanitary kit and followed up with Covid positive cases in their area.

Active Covid cases: Nil

Covid precautions now: Though awareness has increased, they are still trying to take appropriate steps, asking residents to strictly maintain the social distancing norms and wear masks.

Rank: Second

Block: BE

Prize money: Rs 15,000 

Their effort: Senior citizens of the block water the plants themselves in their green verge, said secretary Pulok Dey. “We are now turning the focus to our areas of weakness so we can do even better next time.”

Covid precautions then: They started sanitising the block twice a week from May 17, 2020 and have still kept up the practice. They also organised a blood donation camp.

Active Covid cases: Nil

Covid precautions now: A month back they were thinking of  stopping the sanitisation but since cases are rising again, they have decided to continue. The block committee is urging both residents and domestic helps to take the vaccine.

Rank: Third

Block: BD

Prize money: Rs 10, 000 

Their effort: “We stressed on cleanliness, greenery, plastic control and dengue awareness. We went around asking nearby shops to stop using plastic bags and gave out eco-friendly bags instead,” said Partha Sarathi Adak of the committee.

Covid precautions then: The association distributed food and health kit to the needy and was on call whenever residents needed anything.

Covid precautions now: They have cancelled Poila Baisakh and Rabindrajayanti programmes this year.

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