Kottayam: The approval given by the Pollution Control Board to the sewage treatment plant at Sannidhanam has become invalid as the Travancore Devaswom Board has not taken steps to reduce the count of the coliform bacteria in the treated sewage.
The plant is dysfunctional though the Sabarimala festival is slated to begin on November 16.
“We had approved the sewage treatment plant on the condition that the coliform count of the treated sewage should not exceed 230 per 100 millilitre a day which is now over 50,000 per 100 millilitre. Moreover, the sewage network system is not connected and due to this sewage may bypass the treatment plant. Hence, the approval for the sewage treatment plant at Sannidhanam has become invalid. The disinfection system is not functional,” Mr Alexander George, environmental engineer, PCB, Pathanamthitta told Deccan Chronicle.
As the sewage network system of the plant is not connected, the sewage may overflow through the manhole and reach the Pampa river. Many tribal families of Attathode tribal settlement are using the Pampa water for their needs. Though the sewage treatment plant at
Sannidhanam is supposed to process five million litres of waste a day, it has the capacity to process only 3.5 million litres.
The sewage plant at Pampa is under construction, but its capacity is only 3.5 million litres a day. A new plant having a capacity of 10 million litres per day is proposed.
The forest department is worried that the plant cannot meet the requirements.
In the last season, a cow elephant had died after consuming plastic waste. The problem lies in the failure to segregate the plastic from the food wastes and hence the elephants may consume the plastic waste.
"This is posing a threat this time also. The waste materials should be segregated properly and the police should not allow any plastic materials inside," Mr C.K. Haby, deputy director of Periyar Tiger Reserve, told DC.
TDB member K.P. Sankardas said that the board had taken steps to rectify the lapses at the sewage plant and that the plant will be made functional before November 10....