Menacing waves threaten to wash away coastal road

Panic gripped the residents of the Eravipuram Kakkathoppe coast again on Monday as the sea turned rough and took away about 5 metres of the coast.

The menacing waves threaten to wash away more areas of the coast, posing an immediate threat to the coastal road. In view of the situation, the KSEB has started shifting the electric posts along that course to safer locations.

Caving in to pressure from the residents, the Ports Department has taken the decision to suspend the dredging activities underway at the Kollam Port. As the sea began turning unusually rough in the area last week, the residents allege that the dredging being carried out at the Kollam Port is responsible for the development.

In protest against the dredging, the residents of the area blocked the National Highway at Kottiyam last week. The sea, which became calm for a couple days afterwards, again turned rough on Monday. The main demand of the residents now is a breakwater along their coast to protect them from the sea which has turned unpredictable.

On Monday, a large number of women and children took to the streets to register their protest against the alleged apathy on the part of the authorities. They blocked all the government vehicles passing that way. A huge police posse was deployed in the area to thwart any untoward incident.

The residents were then informed by the officials that the matter will be urgently discussed. But they insisted that all discussions be held in their presence at Kakkathoppe itself. District Collector P.G. Thomas and Assistant Commissioner of Police B. Krishna Kumar soon arrived there and led the discussions.

The Ports Department was then formally informed about the situation. The residents say that Eravipuram used to be a calm coast till the construction of the Tangasseri breakwater. The breakwater was constructed to create the Tangasseri harbour for traditional fishermen. After that, the sea began turning rough occasionally along some parts of the Eravipuram coast but Kakkathoppe was largely safe.

The sea began to pose a threat to the thickly populated Kakkathoppe, with the progress of the dredging work at the port which commenced last month, the residents allege.

The dredging work is being carried out to increase the draft of the harbour for accommodating ships under the coastal shipping programme of the State government.

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