Call for statutory authority solely for lake

A group of green MLAs in the United Democratic Front (UDF) visited the freshwater Sasthamcotta Lake in the district on Monday. The lake is experiencing an alarming decline in its water level and facing nutrient contamination.

After an on-the-spot study of the lake’s condition, V.D. Satheesan, MLA, said the lake was so fragile that the green MLAs would demand a statutory authority solely for Sasthamcotta Lake. The demand would be raised in the next session of the Assembly.

He said that one of the main reasons for the fall in the water level was the rampant unauthorised sand-mining in the West Kallada area around the lake. The mining had created abysses deeper that the lake, and this had resulted in the water seeping into these abysses.

The MLAs would request Home Minister Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan to end the mining menace by deploying the police in strength, he said. The lake was a great asset of the State, and a drinking water source for lakhs of people. It was important that the sand-mining at West Kallada be stopped to protect the lake, he said.

The MLAs’ visit was not only meant to prepare a study report on the lake, but was also aimed at promoting the long-standing agitation of environmental activists for the lake’s protection, he said

The other MLAs in the group included V.T. Balram, T.N. Prathapan, and M.V. Sreyamskumar. Kovur Kunjumon, the local MLA, was present.