Nellore: As all legal disputes pertaining to land allotment have been resolved, the National Institute of Ocean Technology, Chennai, is speeding up the process to have a seafront facility at SPSR Nellore district.
According to NIOT director Ramadass, the seafront facility would have adequate laboratory / field testing facilities and integration bays for development and testing of prototype systems. NIOT functions under the Union earth science ministry.
This is in addition to validation of indigenously developed marine systems in ocean environment for future proposals of NIOT. Since such a facility needs to be established on land abutting the sea, an expanse of 153 acre was allotted for the purpose on the seafront abutting the Bay of Bengal at Pamanji and Vagarru villages. This is in addition to the land in the hinterland at Chittedu village, ameasuring about 53 acres, for the development of training facilities.
In spite of the pending legal issues and problem of access to the site, NIOT has been carrying out various activities at the Pamanji site. The entire site has been fenced. A raceway pond has been constructed for Marine Biotechnology Research for the mass culturing of marine microalgae.
This is for a technology demonstration on mass culturing of marine microalgae for production of nutraceuticals (health supplement) under a programme of technology transfer to the industry. A pump house for reaching seawater to the raceway pond is set up on the seafront.
In order to promote skills on ‘open sea cage’ culturing of finfish by applying appropriate hatchery and larval rearing technology, a training session for local fishermen was carried out in Pamanji.
“At Chittedu campus, a compound wall has been constructed around the entire campus and a building with framework and a project site office has been built.
It is proposed to use the space for promoting incubation and start-up activities, by way of installing test, measuring and assembly units so as to also impart skill development and provide employment opportunity for locals,” Ramadass said.
The NIOT director said there were several legal issues related to the Seafront site at Pamanji - Vagarrum which have been amicably resolved by joint efforts of NIOT and the district administration, Nellore. The land has finally been handed over to NIOT in July 2021.
NIOT has erected a temporary road for access to the Pamanji site. This is not an all-weather road. The district administration has been urged to provide a direct all-weather permanent entry to the NIOT site at Pamanji and Vagarru.
He said that the presence of an aqueduct in Tuppilipalem hampers the transport of material for construction to the site. “For the past two years, the work has been affected due to Covid19 and the restrictions on interstate travel. However, NIOT has carried out all desk-related studies and obtained environmental clearance for the proposed activities on the seafront.
With the resolving of legal issues pertaining to land acquisition, NIOT now proposes to undertake various activities for which preparation of detailed engineering designs is in progress.