Agriculture Lands are poisoned by textile processing units

Kadaiyampatti village families’ plight

Unproductive land:Indiscriminate discharge of effluents has severely affected the agricultural activities of families in Kadaiyampatti near Bhavani. — PHOTO:M. GOVARTHAN

ERODE: The families depending on the income from agriculture in Kadaiyampatti village, near Bhavani, are slowly quitting their profession as the textile processing units in the area are poisoning their lands by discharging chemical effluents.

Huge amount of untreated effluents are being let into the cultivable land, vacant space and water carrying channels. “The effluents got stagnated on the land and percolated deep into the ground, poisoning the soil and the ground water,” people in the village point out.

The agricultural productivity has come down drastically. The soil has become unproductive.

“There is a sharp fall in the crop yield. Agriculture is no longer fetching good income for us. Already a significant number of people in the village have quit farming and started selling their lands,” K.R.Palanisamy, a farmer in the village says.

What is more bothering is that the textile processing units are buying these lands and letting out effluents into them.

“All the nearby lands are affected due to this practice,” farmers said.

Environment

“The entire environment in the village is polluted. Children and women fall ill very often. A significant number of people have already moved to Bhavani and Erode,” farmers point out. Farmers, who made repeated representations to the authorities concerned earlier, have now stopped complaining.

“There is no point in complaining as officials at the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board and the district administration remain mute spectators. They know that we are suffering at the hands of textile processing units. We have complained umpteen times to the Collector at the grievances redressal meeting. But still no fruitful steps have been taken up to shutdown these units,” farmers lament.

“It seems the authorities want to see all of us quit farming and give way for the textile processing units to pollute the environment more,” villagers charge.

Officials, when contacted, maintained that they were taking action against the textile processing units, which were violating the rules.

“If authorities’ shutdown a unit, the machineries are shifted to another building to start a new unit and continue to pollute the environment.

The Central and State governments should bring in an effective solution to this issue and protect the agriculture,” farmers demand.

S. Ramesh – From THE HINDU

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Erode bus stand in need of attention

ERODE: Overflowing sewage, uncollected garbage, stinking and sickening toilets, broken chairs and dust covered platforms continue to be the hallmarks of Erode bus stand.

Despite the fact that thousands of people visit and hundreds of buses touch it daily, the condition of the bus stand is utterly chaotic, signifying the total apathy of the local authorities in improving the conditions prevailing here.

“The air is always filled with foul smell emanating from the unclean public toilets and uncollected garbage heaps,” say passengers.

The public convenience facilities at the bus stand are stinking. Most of the bus crew and passengers dare not enter these toilets, but prefer to ease themselves in the open, behind some vehicles.

As if the above mentioned problems are not suffice, the septic tank of a pay-and-use toilet started overflowing on Thursday.

From THE HINDU

Cane growers’ plea on open market sale

ERODE: The State Government should allow the sugarcane growers to sell their produce in the open market without obtaining a no-objection certificate from the respective sugar mills, farmers said.

Participating in their grievances redressal day meeting held here recently, the farmers pointed out that the government was implementing a rule, which mandates the sugarcane growers to get no-objection certificate from the respective sugar mills before selling their produce to the manufacturers of jaggery and sale of other products in the open market.

Refusal

A majority of the sugar mills were refusing to provide no-objection certificate to the growers.

The government should scrap the rule immediately and allow the growers to sell their produce in the open market, farmers said.

A few farmers also complained that they were facing difficulties in obtaining crop loans from the banks.

They wanted the district administration to instruct the banks to extend crop loans to all the eligible farmers without unnecessary delays.

Collector R. Sudalaikannan, in his reply, assured that the administration would initiate efforts to redress the grievances of farmers quickly.

He also appealed to the farmers to co-operate with the district administration for the establishment of an integrated marketing complex for turmeric.

From THE HINDU

Residents face acute drinking water shortage

ERODE: The residents of a number of colonies in Periya Semur municipality here are facing acute drinking water shortage.

An ordeal:Many colonies in Periya Semur Municipality, Erode district, are experiencing severe water scarcity. — PHOTO: M. GOVARTHAN

The frequency of water supply stretched from a minimum of two days to 10 days in many residential areas. “Sometimes, we get water once in 15 days. Many of us are forced to fetch water from distant places and also buy water from private suppliers,” residents complain.

It is very common to see women from the poor families fetching water from distant locations. “We cannot afford to buy water from the private suppliers. So, we use the push carts to carry the water pots,” women point out.

The municipality had earlier provided water supply once in two days. The piped water supply would be maintained for at least two to three hours or even for four hours on weekends and on holidays. However, for the past few months, the duration gradually reduced and the supply restricted to an hour or 30 minutes depending on the quantum of water stored in overhead tanks.

The problems in the drinking water supply network of the municipality and rampant illegal tapping of water were said to be the major reasons for the shortage. The leaks and pipeline damages at many parts were yet to be attended.

Similarly, the officials were yet to initiate concrete action against the persons and commercial establishments, which were illegally tapping water from the local body’s pipelines.

“The commercial establishment, particularly eateries, were using motor pumpsets to tap from the pipelines. This had severely affected the water supply in the tail-end areas,” people pointed out.

Residents urged the municipal administration to initiate immediate steps to sort out the problems in the water distribution network and ensure adequate supply of water.

Officials of the local body, however, maintained that they were providing sufficient supply of drinking water to the people.

From THE HINDU

Release water in Kalingarayan Canal

ERODE: Members of the Kalingarayan Pasana Sabhi has urged the district administration to take steps to release water in Kalingarayan Canal from July 1.

The Public Works Department is carrying out repairs and maintenance works in the canal. The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development provided a sum of Rs. 12 crore for these works.

Postpone

Since the works are progressing at a snail’s pace, members of the association wanted the administration to postpone the remaining works to the next year and release water from July 1.

This would help the farmers depending on the canal take up cultivation. The members adopted a resolution to this effect at a meeting held here recently.

From THE HINDU

Enhance health care facilities in Erode

To provide better treatment under Kalaignar insurance scheme

ERODE: Erode district was ranked second in the State for providing treatment to the people under the Kalaignar Insurance Scheme for Life Saving Treatments, Collector R. Sudalaikannan said.

Participating in a mass contact programme held in Vijayapuri village panchayat here recently, the Collector called upon the healthcare sector in the district to enhance the facilities to provide treatment to more people under this scheme.

Coimbatore district was ranked first as it has hospitals with advanced facilities.

Even people from Erode district were going to Coimbatore seeking advanced healthcare services, he pointed out. Over 5.12 lakh families in the district were given the Smart Card under the Kalaignar Insurance scheme till date, he added.

The Collector appealed to the elected representatives of local bodies to extend their support for the successful completion of the Census exercise.

The first phase of the Census 2011exercise, House listing and Housing Census, is being carried out in all the parts of the district.

In the household enumeration, to be carried out till July 15, the owner of the house will be asked to provide details for 35 questions.

The second phase, called the Population Enumeration phase, will be held in February in 2011.

A unique feature of this census is the preparation of National Population Register (NPR), in which all persons aged over 15 years will be photographed and fingerprinted to create a biometric national database. The Census 2011 will form the base for the issuance of national individual identity cards, the Collector said.

Mr. Sudalaikannan wanted the elected representatives to co-ordinate with the field staff and help the people in their respective areas to furnish their details.

Later he distributed welfare assistance to the tune of Rs. 12.87 lakh to 242 beneficiaries.

Senior officials from various departments participated in the programme.

From THE HINDU

Erode: Learning under fear

ERODE: The 76 students studying at Sillangatupudur Panchayat Union School in Modakurichi block here look at the roof very often with fear in their eyes.

Risky: A view of the damaged building of Sillangatupudur Panchayat Union Middle School in Modakurichi block in Erode district. - PHOTO: M. GOVARTHAN

It might look odd for the visitors. But it is a matter of safety for them.

There were a number of incidents when chunks of concrete broke off from the roof of the old building and fell on the students.

“The building got damaged long ago and it was unfit for use. We have only two buildings in our school.

The other building with tiled roof cannot accommodate all the students. So we have to use this damaged building to conduct classes,” T. Subramani, a members of the village education committee said.

Teachers and parents had taken this issue to the notice of officials in the district on a few occasions.

“They have assured us to take steps for the construction of a new building with more space. But we are yet to see any development,” parents said.

The situation turned worse during the recent rains.

“The roof was leaking and teachers were not able to conduct classes. We are afraid of sending our wards to the school,” parents said.

Upgrade

The State government, without providing necessary infrastructure, had upgraded the school as a middle school during previous academic year.

“People are reluctant to admit their children here. A few of them were sending their children to the nearby schools,” Mr. Subramani said.

Teachers and parents appealed to the State Government to take immediate steps to construct new building for the school.

They also wanted the government to construct a compound wall for the school as it was located very close to the road.

Amenities such as adequate drinking water supply provisions and toilets should also be created, they said.

From THE HINDU