Railways told to clean culverts that run through its property

Cleaning of the canals before the Ernakulam South Railway station began on Wednesday.

The initiative, with people's support, was led by Deputy Mayor B. Bhadra.

The funds or facilities of the Kochi Corporation were not used for the project. Instead, the traders of the area, including hoteliers and shop owners, supported the effort and made contributions for the work. Besides the traders, auto rickshaw drivers also supported the drive, said Ms. Bhadra who is representing the area in the Corporation.

“We hired a mini-excavator from West Kochi for de-clogging the canal. Though there was minor resistance from a shop owner against the move, the people's resolve succeeded and cleaning operations progressed,” she said.

The canals had been left untouched for years together and the waste deposited in the canal and the silt gathered there had prevented the free flow of flood water. The cleaning was undertaken as part of the pre-monsoon cleaning drive for freeing the area from water logging, she said.

The outlets from the toilet and kitchen of a canteen functioning from the railway station were opened to the drain.

The Corporation will issue notice to the authorities to stop unscientific waste disposal, she said.

A letter was also issued to the Railways this year to clean the culverts that run through its property. Even after writing to the authorities last year, the Railways did not undertake any such operations. They should either clean the culverts themselves or allow the corporation to do the work, she said.

The clogged drains and culverts are mainly responsible for water logging in Kalathiparambil Road and Karikkamuri Roads and South Railway station premises. The inundation in the area can be reduced considerably if the drains and culverts in the region are de-clogged, Ms. Bhadra said.

KMRC to fund cleaning

Meanwhile, the Kochi Metro Rail Corporation Limited has sanctioned Rs.1.5 crore for de-silting the Thevara-Perandur canal. The decision was taken following a request from Mayor Tony Chammany at the director board meeting of the corporation.

The fund was sanctioned after considering the request as an out-of-the-agenda item.

The work would be treated as the preparatory work for the Kochi Metro project.

The agency will tender the work and implement it. The work is expected to be completed before May 15, Mr. Chammany said.

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