Rourkela :23/7/23:With most of the beautification works undertaken in Rourkela ahead of the Men’s Hockey World Cup 2023 ruining and wallowing in neglect, the Smart City is losing its sheen fast.
Most of the dazzling projects constructed during the mega event to popularise the city in the international arena have been damaged due to alleged negligence. Moreover, the beautiful ornamental trees planted during the event have been withered due to proper maintenance. As many as 30,000 pine trees with a cost of Rs 1,000 each were planted in the city during the grand event. However, most of those beautiful trees have been damaged only after six months.
All the beautification works undertaken from Birsa Munda Square up to RMC Square in the city have been damaged either fully or partially. Residents of Rourkela have expressed their resentment over the development.
“Before planting trees, they should know how much care those plants require. Those who are getting paid for the maintenance are indulged in corruption and they are keeping mum over the issue. They will again plant trees with tax payers’ money. It’s like ‘Sarkar ka maal dariya main daal’,” said Anirudha Samal, a resident of Rourkela.
“This plantation drive was just a drama, no trees will be there after a month,” said Suryakant Mohanty, another resident of Rourkela.Though crores of rupees were spent on various projects in Rourkela ahead of the Hockey World Cup under Union Government’s Smart Cities Mission and District Mineral Funds, many of them have been either ruined or lying in dilapidated conditions.
A 40-foot-high statue depicting an Indian hockey player erected in the city ahead of this year’s Hockey World Cup collapsed due to a thunderstorm last month. Though the State government is boasting of the newly constructed Birsa Munda Stadium in the City as the No.1 hockey stadium across the globe, water leaking from its roof has shocked the sports enthusiasts in the State.With most of the trees planted in the city as part of the beautification drive withering, new saplings are being planted from Panposh Square up to Udit Nagar Square.Meanwhile, local residents are irked over the development.
“Authorities have not done their duties properly as it was government property. Due to lack of proper maintenance new trees are planted again,” said a local resident.However, as per Rourkela Municipal Corporation (RMC) Commissioner Subhankar Mohapatra, some of the trees wilted due to heavy rain and wind and those trees are being replaced with new plants.“All trees will be replenished with no additional cost. Anti-termite treatment is being done with the same contract cost. We have already hired agencies for this work by floating tenders,” said Mohapatra.