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Project To Make Last Journey Of Departed Souls More Dignified

It is one place where we are confronted with the ultimate reality of life, that whoever comes to this world has to leave one day without the worldly wares he has acquired during his lifetime. The cremation ground, where the ‘antim sanskar’ is performed to allow the body to mingle with the five elements which it is made up of, and where the essence and the immortal, the Soul, is liberated, thus becomes a revered place. To make this last journey more dignified for every departed soul, the Rotary Club of Chandigarh, through its four constituents, on Tuesday entered into a partnership with the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh (MCC) to upgrade facilities at the main Cremation Ground in Sector 25.

As part of this public-private partnership, funds meant for CSR (corporate social responsibility) activities from the private sector will, for the first time, flow to the MCC for executing and maintaining a public project, opening up new avenues of funds for the cash-strapped civic body. Under the MoU (memorandum of understanding) signed with the MCC, Rotary Club of Chandigarh Service Club, KDDL Ethos Foundation, TPK Welfare Trust and IPF Vikram India Ltd. will provide the entire capital expenditure of Rs. 40 lakh to be incurred on upgrading the men’s and ladies’ toilet blocks and bathing, washing and seating areas at the cremation ground and Rs 30,000 per month for their maintenance over five years.

Project To Make Last Journey Of Departed Souls More Dignified, Lifeinchd

On behalf of the MCC, the MoU was signed by Mayor Davesh Moudgil, and on behalf of the four equal partners by R.K. Saboo (former World Presdient, Rotary International for KDDL Ethos Foundation), Jagesh K. Khaitan (Chairman, Kuantum Papers Ltd. for TPK Welfare Trust), Paramjit Singh (for IPF Vikram India Ltd.) and A.P. Singh (President, Rotary Club of Chandigarh for Rotary Club of Chandigarh Service Club), all senior Rotarians.

As per the agreement, two members from the donor partners will be included in the consultative committee to be set up to monitor the progress of the project.

Speaking on the occasion, Moudgil said this was a good beginning for flow of CSR funds from corporates for developmental activities of the corporation. He appealed to others to follow suit since CSR funds spend in the municipal corporation activities will lead to better monitoring.

Project To Make Last Journey Of Departed Souls More Dignified, Lifeinchd

Saboo on his part explained that the funds will not be released to the corporation at one go but in a staggered manner linked to various stages of construction of the project. The cost of maintenance will be shared between the donors and MCC in a 50:50 ratio, he added.

Saboo wanted a commitment from the MCC that the project would be delivered within the laid down time frame and that a reputed contactor would be put on the job with a commitment to maintain it for five years after completion. The commitment of funds by the donors for maintenance can be extended beyond the five-year period, he said.

The proposed upgraded toilet block will include a gents’ section and a ladies’ section. There will be two water closets in the men’s section and three in the ladies’ section, besides five bath areas for men and one for ladies, 12 urinals for men, five wash basins for men and three for ladies, one wash area and one WC each for differently-abled men and ladies, and 40 common hand wash areas. 

Among the MCC officials present were Joint Commissioner Tejdeep Singh Saini, Chief Engineer Manoj Bansal and Superintending Engineer Public Health Sanjay Arora.

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