Rain brings filth into Pampa posing health hazards to pilgrims and local people
Filth drained into river Pampa, at the foothills of Sabarimala, by rain water is posing alarming health risk to the pilgrims and even to the people living on the banks of the river along its course via Kuttanad.
A part of this filth is from Pampa Manalpuram, a major base camp of the pilgrims.
Human waste overflowing from collection tanks of the huge toilet complex at the Pampa Manalpuram mixes with rain water and remains as a cesspool behind the hotels and the toilet block.
This sewage ultimately reaches River Pampa through a drainage right into the bathing ghats, where hundreds of devotees take customary holy dip, Pampa-snanom.
The stench emanating from the filth forces pilgrims to close their nostrils while they pass by the area. “Why are the government and the authorities concerned keeping a blind eye towards this criminal act ?’’ quipped a devotee from Tamil Nadu. “This is nothing but a sad testimony to fact neither the State government nor the temple administration are bothered about a safe pilgrimage to the pilgrims coming to Sabarimala from different parts of India and abroad,” said an elderly pilgrim from Palakkad.
Nearly 17 major drinking water supply schemes are situated along the downstream reaches of Pampa.
Though the State Pollution Control Board has opened an office at Pampa, the authorities concerned have not taken any step to check this alarming pollution problem for reasons best known to them.
There are also other faces of pollution very evident in the area.
The long Nadappanthal cutting across the Pampa Manalpuram is littered with food waste and disposable plates.
Ironically, the Travancore Devaswom Board, the Sabarimala Sanitation Society chaired by the District Collector, or any of the devotees’ organisation, appear to have taken no notice of this pollution menace as well as the littering problem.