‘Industries Centre can help find illegal outlets into river’
The State Pollution Control Board has sought the assistance of District Industries Centre (DIC) to check whether effluents from industrial units in Eloor and Edayar were discharged into the Periyar through pipes and drains meant to discharge rainwater.
The move forms part of the directives issued by the National Green Tribunal and the State Level Monitoring Committee on Solid Waste Management appointed by the tribunal to act tough against those found polluting the river. Senior board officials said that the support of the DIC was necessary as the industrial estate comes under the centre.
The board wanted to ascertain whether unauthorised outlets have been directed towards stormwater drains set up for the discharge of rainwater from the premises of industrial units. The presence of such illegal outlets can be checked by digging along the side of the drain, according to its officials.
The SLMC had pulled up the board in its report filed before the Southern Bench of the tribunal while stating that it had failed along with other departments concerned in taking strong action against the Periyar pollution. The committee had suggested the formation of an independent committee having powers to inspect any industry, hotel, high-rises, health care institutions and other establishments on the banks of the river and to collect data necessary for the evaluation from such institutions.
A report filed by the committee before the tribunal in September had suspected the presence of underground pipes starting from industrial units and ultimately discharging industrial waste illegally to the river through the system. The report had included photographs of drains through which industrial effluents reached the river. However, the committee had recommended that its inference needed to be ascertained through further investigations.
The board is expected to present a concrete action plan before the tribunal in the first week of November. The counsel for the board had assured the tribunal that it would come up with a detailed report on the action taken against each erring unit along the stretch of the Periyar.
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