Trichy's Federation of Consumer and Service Organisation

At least once in routine work schedule, most of us might have experienced the lull feeling of Monday blues by seeing vast workload queued up for an entire week ahead particularly immediately after a well cherished weekend. But for a group of 15 social workers associated with service organisations, Mondays were never less enthusiastic in past eight years as they have been engaged in the free service of guiding common public to approach the authorities during the weekly grievance meeting held at the district collectorate here. The social workers for the past eight years have altogether helped people to properly lodge more than two lakh petitions of which many petitions have been addressed.

Federation of Consumer and Service Organisation, a group of residents welfare associations, NGOs working for city development has mooted the idea by January 2009 for guiding grieved people with petitions approaching the district administration during weekly grievance meet organised by district administration. Subsequently, with the consent from the then district administration headed by district collector T Soundaiya, members of the federation during the every weekly grievance meeting held on Mondays have been directing people about whom and where to approach in district collectorate for fetching solution to their grievances. “Several touts had been financially exploiting the desperate people in distress through false promises but since the moment we launched our service, we have managed to curb such incidents. Rural people without awareness would approach us just with their raw complaints, we would draft their complaints in written and systematic format which upon provided to district collector would be directed to department concerned for solution.” said, M Sekaran, president of the Federation of Consumer and Service Organisation.

Of the total 32 districts in the State, Tiruchy district is the only proud district administration to have such mechanism through social workers for properly guiding the common public to lodge their complaints. “Through our work for past eight years, we have eased the burden of district administration as we segregate the complaints before it reached the authority. We as well help the district administration by sorting out fake and ineligible petitions at the very early stage which could save the valuable time of government officials during Monday grievance meets.” R A Thomas, member of the federation

The federation comprise of members from various walks of life including businessmen who have been making themselves available during every Monday mornings for past eight years. Of course with friendly chiding from their family members for not spending ample time with family during the occasions of extended weekend plan. Recently through the efforts of the Federation of Consumer and Service Organisation, one nonagenarian woman has managed to avail the Old Age Pension (OAP) benefits that she has been fighting for years, the case was just one of the myriad solutions provided by the social workers in past years, said the members. Even as the district saw district collectors being transferred on routine in past eight years, the service continue to serve the grieved public.

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