Residents flay supply of contaminated water

not potable:Residents of ward 21 of Virudhunagar town displaying contaminated water.

VIRUDHUNAGAR: Residents of ward 21 of Virudhunagar town have complained of sewage mixing with drinking water supplied through pipeline.

The residents fumed that drinking water was being supplied only two times a month in the town.

And even that little water was not usable for any purpose, a resident said.

Stating that chikungunya broke out in the area few months back, they fear of falling victim to diarrhoea due to water contamination.

The problem was prevalent in Marimuthu lane, Ramasamy lane, Andichiamman lane, Poosari lane and Kuppaiah lane, they said.

The ward councillor, N. Thangapandiammal, said she had complained about the issue to the administration two months back.

But no concrete action has been taken so far.


Madurai: Plan to retain water in temple tank

Cement bottom of four smaller tanks to be replaced with clay and sand

MADURAI: The Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple is considering experimenting with a new method to retain water in its Golden Lotus Tank.

The experiment contemplates replacing the cement bottom in the four smaller tanks of the Golden Lotus Tank with two feet of clay and one foot of sand and assess whether this would prevent seepage of water.

R. Padmanaban, Executive Officer of the temple and Joint Commissioner of the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments (HR and CE) Department, said here on Tuesday that this method would be used for the entire tank if the experiment turned out to be successful. Preliminary work for this experiment had already commenced, he said, adding that the results of the trial runs would be observed for a couple of months before contemplating replicating it. The temple would seek the support of private donors for this purpose. It was also prepared to execute the venture with its own funds, if necessary, he said. At present, the cement bottom of the tank is unable to prevent seepage of water. However, clay will be able to help retain water.

The Meenakshi Temple has also received a Rs. 40 lakh-proposal from the Madurai Corporation for filling up the tank with water.

Under this proposal, the civic body has assured providing three lakh litres of water every day. This proposal has been sent to the HR and CE Commissioner for approval. The temple and Madurai Corporation will equally share the total project cost of Rs. 40 lakh. While the Corporation will source the water from the Vaigai, the temple has been asked to bear the electricity charges for pumping the water. However, if the experiment were to succeed, the temple might need three lakh litres only once in 15 or 30 days thereby conserving water and expenditure, said Mr. Padmanaban.


Water plant at Thanjavur GH

It will supply 5,000 litres per hour

THANJAVUR: Patients undergoing treatment at the Thanjavur Medical College Hospital and the large number of visitors will henceforth get hundred per cent pure drinking water. A purified drinking water project which functions on reverse osmosis was dedicated to the hospital on Wednesday.

The project has been implemented by the Rotary Club of Thanjavur Kings with a matching grant from Rotary International. The efforts of the Rotary Club for the past five years, has borne fruit now.

G. Ambujam, Medical superintendent of the hospital and N. Govindaraj, district governor of Rotary International district 2980, dedicated the project.

The project purifies bore water from the overhead tank of the hospital using three filters and reverse osmosis membranes. After separating waste water, it supplies pure drinking water of 5,000 litres per hour to the hospital which requires nearly 20,000 to 25,000 litres of water every day. Sixteen outlets will supply water to the wards in the hospital.

According to C. Gunasekaran, Rotary assistant governor, in this matching grant project, Rotary club of Thanjavur Kings, the host club, donated Rs. 1.12 lakh (2,500 US dollars). Co-sponsor club, the Rotary club of Victoria gave an equal grant of 2500 US dollars.

Rotary International has given a grant of 5,000 dollars. In total 10,000 dollars- Rs. 4.5 lakh was spent on the project.

M.S.Asif Ali, assistant Rotary governor, said that it was a dream project taken up by the Rotary club of Thanjavur Kings. He appealed to the hospital authorities to maintain the plant properly. The hospital caters to the needs of patients from nearly eight districts.

AM. Sokkalingam, President of Rotary club of Thanjavur Kings, D. Kannan, Project chairman, participated in the function.


Water released from Barur tank

KRISHNAGIRI: Water was released from the main irrigation canal of Barur tank in Pocchampalli taluk on Wednesday for the first crop.

Collector V. Arun Roy released the water by opening the sluice gates of the east and west main canals in the presence of E.G. Sugavanam, MP, . Water would be released till November 26 benefiting 2512.39 acres.


Stormwater drainage channel, a health hazard

It is being more used as a free space for attending nature’s call by passengers, workers

TIRUCHI: A stormwater drainage channel, running to a length of about 20 metres near the Chathiram bus stand I in the city, has been posing a serious health hazard for years together, testifying to the Corporation officials’ indifference and apathy to ensuring public health.

AN EYESORE:The stormwater channel near the Chathiram bus stand in the city. — Photos: R. Ashok.

The entire channel is being more used as a free space for attending Nature’s call by the passengers, passers-by, workers and labourers from a chain of petty shops in the vicinity. The foul stench emanating round-the-clock in the area has been a source of grave threat to public health.

The area is a busy thoroughfare and all the city buses bound for Srirangam, Lalgudi and Thuraiyur pass through the AICUF Hall. But, still, the problem of utilising the channel as a toilet remains unresolved. The irony is that the open defecation has been a common phenomenon at this channel even in broad daylight.

The factors causing the problem are quite many. The channel runs close to the compound of the All India Catholic University Federation (AICUF) Hall. The site has also been the van stand for the past two decades and, obviously, a number of vans, taxis and other vehicles are parked in front of the AICUF Hall. “Ours is a popular stand in the city, where any vehicle is available round the clock,” says one of the van operators.

It is a chain of vehicles which provide the required cover for those attending the Nature’s Call. This was evident from the fact that a few persons were seen walking up to the channel to attend the Nature’s call, well utilising the privacy behind a van. With the stream of passengers attending the Nature’s call all through the day, it is often a tough job for press photographers to focus the lens at the channel and avoid those attending Nature’s call at the site.

Another factor contributing to the nuisance is that a number of buses bound for Ariyalur, Cuddalore, Thittakudi, Neyveli and Perambalur are parked on the road in front of the AICUFF Hall. Obviously, a large number of passengers can be seen loitering in the area, awaiting the bus for their destination.

The absence of a pay-and-use toilet at the site makes these passengers to utilise this channel — the nearest point for attending the nature’s call.

“The entire channel should be covered with concrete slabs. A ‘pay-and-use toilet’ should be built at the site for the convenience of the passengers,” says Fr. Arul Ravi, former Director of AICUF. The AICUF authorities have sought the assistance of the City Corporation authorities for proper maintenance of the channel in the larger interest of public health and hygiene, he says.

The AICUF Hall has been a hosting-centre for conferences and seminars on human rights and social issues. “Several representatives of non-governmental organisations, rights and social activists from different parts of the state hold their meetings here, for evolving an action plan. But the problem of health hazard at the AICUF Hall, by itself, remains a puzzle for years,” says N. Margaret Joeji, Director of ‘Success,’ a city-based non-governmental organisation working for the cause of human rights.

Sathish Tarnas, a social activist, says that a pay-and-use toilet should be constructed to ensure public hygiene. A.C. Titty Albert, Co-ordinator of NalandaWay Foundation, Chennai, says that the first impression a stranger gains about Tiruchi city was the worst. The shifting of the van-stand to another place would deprive the passengers of the privacy.

M. Balaganessin From THE HINDU