Karur: Farmers and activists oppose new dyeing units

Say it would further vitiate the fragile ecology in the region

KARUR: Farmers in the district, affected by pollution along with social activists and environmentalists have opposed a plan to establish a new dyeing and bleaching unit at Melapalayam in Karur district.

Various farmers’ forums, Forum for Protection of Water Resources, People’s Livelihood Right Movement and social activists have voiced their opposition to establish a dyeing and bleaching unit alleging that the move would further vitiate the fragile ecology in the region.

Already, sustained industrial pollution has taken a toll of the district’s water sources and environment.

The Amaravathy and the Noyyal have been polluted beyond redemption and have been verily turned into a pollution garbage dump.

Several thousands of acres of fertile fields on which food crops and cash crops were raised and irrigated by these rivers have been rendered fallow.

Year after year crops, cattle and human beings have been affected by industrial pollution.

That being the case, the move by some businesspersons to establish dyeing and bleaching units at Melapalayam Panchayat on the Sanapiratti- Puliyur Road militates against public efforts to stop and reverse pollution affecting water sources.

The organisations have also petitioned the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board against sanctioning clearance for the dyeing unit proposals. However, the TNPCB officials claim that any future dyeing, bleaching unit should install reverse osmosis plant for treating effluents and also comply with the directives and technical advice based on the decision of the High Court that could be disposing of the bunch of cases relating to pollution and only then orders will be given.


Tirupur: 100 dyeing units get closure orders

Power supply to these units disconnected

They failed to comply with Supreme Court orders Consent order given to 13 CETPs

Tirupur: The Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board (TNPCB) on Friday ordered closure of 100 dyeing units in the Tirupur knitwear cluster which failed to comply with the recent Supreme Court order pertaining to pollution caused by the dyeing units on River Noyyal. The power supply to these units was also disconnected.

TNPCB District Environmental Engineer R. Kannan told The Hindu that according to the Supreme Court ruling, the units which either failed to remit the fines imposed for polluting River Noyyal or those units which were members of Common Effluent Treatment Plants (CETPs) which failed to fit Zero Liquid Discharge (ZLD) system all before January 5 evening, should be closed.

The Supreme Court verdict was pronounced after hearing the Public Interest Litigation filed by ‘Noyyal River Ayacutdars Protection Association.’

The bench comprising Chief Justice K. G. Balakrishnan and Justice B. S. Chauhan observed that “Undoubtedly, there has been unabted pollution by the members of Tirupur Dyeing Factory Owners Association” and hence, “they were bound to meet the expenses of removing sludge in the river as well as cleaning of Orathupalayam dam.”

The court also asked the dyeing units to carry out further operations without polluting the river anymore. The TNPCB on Friday gave the consent order to operate 13 Common Effluent Treatment Plants (CETPs) set up in the cluster which had completed fitting ZLD system in it. But not given to six others.


India: SC tells Tirupur’s dyeing industry to pay for polluting

NEW DELHI: Supreme Court has come down hard on industries polluting water bodies, applying the ‘polluters pay’ principle against 150-odd dyeing units in Tirupur’s garment export which had been discharging their waste in Noyyal river.

In an order that may be cited by green activists, the court asked the dyeing units at Karur and Tirupur, which cater to the huge forex earning garment export industry in Tamil Nadu, to pay for cleaning the River Noyyal and other water bodies massively polluted by discharge from their factories.

Agreeing with the stand of the Noyyal River Ayacutdars Protection Association, SC refused to take any lenient view of the environmental hazard resulting from the noxious effluent discharged by the factories adversely affecting the river, the Orthapalayam reservoir and other tanks and channels of the river.

The court noted that the industries have set up 17 common effluent treatment plants (CETPs) and were asked to pay up Rs 55.60 crore for eco-restoration and pollution check work. The Tirupur Dyeing Factories Association, as per a Madras High Court order, had paid up Rs 25 crore for this purpose. The SC said the rest of the amount had to be paid within three months.

A Bench comprising Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan and Justice B S Chauhan said: “It is desirable that the members of the appellant association should ensure the compliance of the directions including the payment of the dues within three months.”

“They shall ensure that no pollution is caused to the river or dam and if cleaning operation has not yet been completed, it shall be completed within three months,” the Bench said.

It said: “Undoubtedly, there has been unabated pollution by the members of the appellant association. They cannot escape the responsibility to meet the expenses of reversing the ecological damage. They are bound to meet the expenses of removing the sludge from the river and also for cleaning the dam. The principles of `polluters pay’ and `precautionary principle’ have to be read with the doctrine of sustainable development.”

The court noted that Tirupur was an industrial hub providing employment to five lakh people in garment industries there, which earn around Rs 10,000 crore in foreign exchange annually for the country. 


Misuse of River Cauvery for washing dyed fabric continues

ERODE: For long people who believe in Hindu mythology have used holy rivers to wash off their sins.

The use of River Cauvery for washing dyed fabric continues unabated in Erode.

The use of River Cauvery for washing dyed fabric continues unabated in Erode.

With the passage of time, the ‘use’ of river for various other purposes, including letting out domestic sewage and effluents as in Ganga and Yamuna, has gain ground. And, River Cauvery is no exception.

It serves as an excellent source for dyeing, bleaching units to wash processed fabric. It also is the cheapest alternative, for there is no need to safe discharge washed water. The use of River Cauvery to wash off the ‘sins’ on the fabric has been going on for more than a decade. And, it continues.

So much ‘sin,’ read dyes, on fabrics has been washed off the river that it has not only lost its holy tag but also become unfit for human use.

That the Erode Corporation and dozens of local bodies down stream pump and supply the very waters for domestic consumption is a different story, though.

The dyeing and bleaching units continue to do it with so much impunity and no action has deterred them. The proof of it is to be seen on the river banks in Vairapalayam, Karungalpalayam and host of other places. The Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board, which is vested with the responsibility of arresting pollution, says washing dyed fabrics in River Cauvery is more of an ‘anti-social activity.’

District Environment Engineer, Erode, Selvam, says the Board cannot act alone and will have to take the help of Transport Department for seizing the vehicle used to transport the goods and the Revenue Department.

He further says that since the Collector, according to a Madras High Court order, has constituted a committee, it is the committee that will have to act. The District Environment Engineer also clarifies that the Board can act only if the washing is carried out by an industry. Asked about the issue of using Cauvery waters for washing dyed fabric and the Engineer’s response, Collector Mahesan Kasirajan, who is the head of the committee, says the officials will act at the earliest.

Article from THE HINDU PAPER by Karthik Madhavan