Alappuzha: Lack of bidders for the groin field project to save shorelines is making the life of coastal folks miserable. It was in July the district administration decided to invite tenders to construct groin fields in sea erosion-hit areas in the district using Rs 150 crore approved by Kerala Infrastructure Investment Fund Board (KIIFB). But the bidding reached nowhere.
The decision was to build groin fields in coastal areas at Alappuzha, Ambalappuzha and Haripad constituencies based on a report prepared by the irrigation department and an administrative sanction followed.
Arun K. Jacob, chief engineer, irrigation department, said there were no takers for the tender called for selecting prequalification bidders. The main issue was the unavailability of sizable rock pieces. “Now two companies have come forward, and we are vetting their credentials,” he said.
He also said that the department was striving hard to get half of the fields laid before the southwest monsoon onset in June.’ Constructed perpendicular to the shore, extending from a point landward of possible shoreline recession into the water beyond the breaker zone, they are either permeable or impermeable, submerged or piercing the free surface.
In June, the government gave the nod to 114 groin fields across the coastline in the state based on a study report of IIT Chennai. The report submitted in 2007 says the magnitude and direction of littoral sediment transport are complex. Hence the groin field is the best option to save Kerala shoreline. In Ambalapp-uzha alone, sea erosion had left 134 families homeless for a decade. They continue to live in relief camps and rented houses.
According to studies, the Arattupuzha village in Haripad Assembly constituency, one of the worst-hit by the 2004 tsunami, has lost almost half of its land in the last 100 years and residents leave before monsoon season fearing monstrous tidal waves.
Sreerag, 35, a driver hailing from Neerkunnam, who still lives in a rented house, after tidal waves washed his home away in 2011, says that the sea was meters away from his house and there was an acre of a coconut plantation. But all area vanished due to sea erosion....