Kalingarayan Canal, the lifeline of hundreds of farmers in the district, now faces fresh onslaught of pollution. This time, it comes from commercial establishments and a few members of the public in Bhavani and its surroundings.

Huge amount of waste including plastic and polythene containers are being dumped into the canal, which was built by Kongu chieftain Kalingarayan 700 years ago connecting River Bhavani with River Noyyal.

Tea stalls, bakeries, restaurants, hotels and roadside fast food stalls are the major generators of waste that end up into the canal, polluting it. The canal is already receiving thousands of gallons of untreated and toxic effluents from the textile processing and tannery units in the district, which is causing irreversible damage to the environment.

The commercial establishments including those in Bhavani town resort to the act of dumping their waste into the canal as the local bodies have failed to implement the solid waste management programme. Even the Bhavani Municipality does not have a place to dump the garbage. Its yard is overflowing and the officials are unable to inding a new place to dump the waste.

Shopkeepers claim that the civic workers are not turning up to collect garbage on a regular basis. Garbage dumped on the streets remains uncollected for weeks together. “How long can we keep the waste in our back yard? So we dispose of the waste near the canal,” a shopkeeper in Bhavani town says.

“The dumping of garbage is a serious problem. Apart from causing pollution, the plastic and polythene containers affect the flow of water, particularly at the regulating points. We will not be able to get enough water if this problem continues,” S. Appusamy, a farmer, points out.

Public Works Department officials have appealed to the local bodies to prevent commercial establishments and residents from dumping garbage into the canal.