Staff Reporter

To approach Government for orders

KOCHI: The Kochi Corporation has decided to impose penalty on unauthorised dumping of toilet waste on roads and drains.

A resolution moved by Deputy Mayor C.K. Manisankar proposed that the Corporation slap a penalty ranging between Rs.10,000 and Rs.1 lakh on the offenders. The resolution said the Corporation would have powers to confiscate the vehicles used for such acts.

Declaring the resolution after a debate in the council, Kochi Mayor Mercy Williams said the Corporation would approach the State Government for issuing necessary orders to enforce the punishment.

However, several members raised doubts regarding the fine the civic body can slap on such offences. V.J. Hycinth and K.M. Hamsakunju suggested that the council should seek legal opinion and the views of the State Government before proceeding with such a resolution.

Explaining the provisions of the Kerala Municipalities Act, Corporation secretary Mini Antony said the civic body could slap a minimum fine of Rs. 10,000 and additional cost and fine as decided by the Corporation council.

The debate in the council veered mostly around environmental issues as the Corporation is planning to observe the World Environment Day celebrations in a big way.

The Corporation would promote the slogan `one tree for each house.' Flats and other commercial establishments in the city would be asked to plant at least 10 trees each. Steps would be taken to prevent littering of public places.

An initiative to plant mangrove saplings will be undertaken near the Palluruthy relief settlement. Decayed palms along the Palm Avenue will be replaced with fresh saplings. The Corporation would promote alternative products for plastic carry bags, she said.

Eco-clubs will be formed to ensure the participation of students in environment protection schemes, she said.

Taking part in the discussion, A.B. Sabu said the pollution of backwaters was threatening the availability of fresh water.

K.J. Antony demanded that some places should be earmarked in the city for displaying plastic festoons than displaying them all across the city.