PIL to stop quarry operation in Nagapattinam district

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Petitioner’s counsel P.Vijendran submitted that the Cauvery delta was the “Bowl of the Rice”.

Madras high court.

Chennai: A Public Interest Litigation has been filed in the Madras high court to direct the authorities to stop the quarrying operation at Thiruchitrambalam which is adjacent to Kumaramangalam, where a Check Dam is being constructed on the Kollidam river.

A division bench comprising Justices M. Sathyanarayanan and R.Hemalatha before whom the PIL filed by C.Mohan Kumar, former Union Organiser of the Kadalangudi Union of Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi, came up for hearing, posted to March 13, further hearing of the case, after Additional government pleader R. Vijayakumar took notice on behalf of the Nagapattinam District Collector, PWD and three others.

Petitioner’s counsel P.Vijendran submitted that the Cauvery delta was the “Bowl of the Rice”. It has been losing its nomenclature slowly due to various reasons including failure of monsoon. The government has permitted the private quarry operators. Totally 9 quarries were running between 26 km. Therefore, the ground water level was depleted further. Totally 7 water pumping stations has been functioning in the area. It gives drinking water to the 14 Panchayats in Seerkazhi Panchayat Union, 7 Village panchayat in the Kollidam Union, 19 Village Panchayat in Mayiladuthurai, he added.

He said former Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu had announced in the legislative assembly in the year 2014 that Rs 430 crore was allocated for the construction of Check Dam which was announced under Rule 110 of the Tamil Nadu State Assembly Rules. However, it was not implemented. Therefore, he filed a petition, which was disposed of on July 29, 2019. Drinking water was supplied four hours per day while the combined drinking water project was implemented. But, now it was reduced to half an hour per day. This being the factual position, he came to understand that the government has decided to start sand quarry at Thiruchitrambalam which was adjacent to Kumaramangalam, where a check dam was being constructed. If the quarry was permitted to operate, the construction of check dam would be affected and in the result the ground water will be further depleted. Therefore, he sent representations to the authorities to stop quarry operation. But there was no response, he added.