PWD dumps waste, sand along marsh

TNN | Oct 9, 2017, 10.54 AM IST
PWD dumps waste, sand along marsh

CHENNAI: The Perumbakkam marshland is facing another threat. The sand desilted from inside the Elcot premises on the Sholinganallur-Perumbakkam road has been dumped along the edge of the Perumbakkam marshland, a stretch more than 500m in length. The Nature Trust founder, K V R K Thirunaranan, who is taking efforts to protect the 75-hectare marshland, said the sand on the edges will get washed into the marshland after the rains. This will result in siltation. The sand is being dumped for the last three months.

Already the contiguity of the marsh has been affected due to laying of an illegal road by a private builder. Now this sand dumping is a new problem, which is further going to affect the Perumbakkam marshland, he said.

Dumping of sand in some parts has got strengthened. Already vehicles passing through this road have started using the strengthened portions on the edges as a temporary parking lot. Adding to that is the open defecation by the vehicle drivers, which is polluting the marshland, he added.

Naturalists joined hands to protect this marshland, which was earmarked for buildings of Tamil Nadu government’s proposed financial city. However, when the proposal did not take off as expected, the area was added with Pallikaranai marshland, as it is a contiguous water body to Pallikaranai.

Thirunaranan said last year a few rare species of migratory birds were sighted in this Perumbakkam marshland. Some of the birds even settled on the edges of the marshland. Birdwatchers were able to see them even with the naked eye, the Nature Trust founder said.

Migratory birds are yet to arrive in this new birding area.”The migratory birds may face problems in the form of pollution with the stopping of vehicles. So the authorities have to immediately clear the sand dumped on the edges of the marsh,” Thirunaranan said.

The silt is dumped by the water resources department, an arm of the public works department.

When contacted, an official in the department said they were constructing a microdrain for the canal located in front of the Elcot IT park. Another macro drain is being built on the canal running between Elcot and Senthamizh Poonga. This is being done to allow the flow of rainwater towards Oggiyam maduvu, he said.

The sand is being dumped in Kalkuttai in Medavakkam. Only a small portion of the sand is being dumped on the edges of the Perumbakkam marshland, the official said, adding that all of the sand will soon be removed.
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