Mudbanks not cleared
The Palliyoda Seva Sanghom (PSS) has decided to do away with the boat race that forms part of the annual snakeboat regatta Uthrittathi Vallamkali to be held on the Pampa at Aranmula on September 20.
The decision was taken at a PSS executive committee meeting at Aranmula on Tuesday evening.
Sanghom secretary Ratheesh R. Mohan and treasurer P. Mohanachandran said the decision was taken in the wake of the unprecedented delay on the part of government departments in clearing the mudbanks on the race course and making other arrangements for the event. The Sanghom leaders said the committee had decided to conduct only the ceremonial snakeboat pageantry on Uthrittathi day. The PSS has been going through a crisis with the resignation of its president K.V. Sambadevan following a resolution adopted by the general body of the organisation against the participation of P.J. Kurien, Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman; Anto Antony, MP; and K. Sivadasan Nair, MLA; in the regatta in protest against their support for the controversial private airport project at Aranmula. The resolution said the proposed private airport would require large-scale conversion of paddy land and wetlands that housed sacred groves and other places of worship and aggravate the degradation of the Pampa. The PSS meeting, chaired by acting president M.P. Sankaranarayana Pillai, accepted the resignation of Mr. Sambadevan.