‘Indiscriminate pollution affecting the Periyar river’
Leader of the Opposition V.S. Achuthanandan has said that industry and environment should be protected to ensure the development of the State.
He was speaking at a meeting organised by trade unions to felicitate Sharan S. Kartha, joint managing director of Cochin Minerals and Rutiles Ltd. (CMRL), on being nominated to the senate of the Cochin University of Science and Technology in Kochi on Friday.
Mr. Achuthanandan said industry formed the base for the growth of the State. But care should be taken to protect water, air and surroundings.
Companies need not be closed down because they cause pollution. But industry should install scientific systems to mitigate pollution at any cost, Mr. Achuthanandan said.
Indiscriminate pollution had affected the ecology of the Periyar river. “I have come across reports showing that wells in the region have become contaminated owing to pollution,” he said.
Crucial for growth
Advising the CMRL management not to neglect the environmental concerns raised by the greens, Mr. Achuthanandan said the company should earn the confidence of all sections of society. He said the development of the Eloor-Edayar area remains crucial for the growth of the State’s industrial sector.
In his presidential address, Industries Minister V.K. Ebrahim Kunju requested Mr. Achuthanandan to take the initiative to evolve a consensus among political parties for the effective utilisation of mineral wealth in the State. “We need to encourage companies that are ready to carry out value addition of the mineral wealth available here,” he said. The Minister said certain vested interests were trying to resist attempts to promote such value addition.
Mr. Achuthanandan had participated in the programme against the requests made by environmentalists, who had alleged that CMRL was a major polluter of the Periyar river.
C.K. Padmanabhan, national council member of Bharatiya Janata Party; K. Chandran Pillai, former MP; V. J. Paulose, DCC president; K.K. Jinnas, president of Kadungalloor grama panchayat; and S.N. Sasidharan Kartha, managing director of CMRL spoke.