Special Correspondent

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Kerala will write to the Centre seeking permission to start work on the Athirappilly hydroelectric project in Thrissur district.

The State Cabinet took the decision in this regard on Wednesday against the background of a notice issued by the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests proposing cancellation of the environmental clearance granted for the project.

The notice issued early this month under the Environment (Protection) Act asked the Kerala State Electricity Board to show cause why the environmental clearance granted for the project should not be revoked.

The notice said that it had come to the Ministry’s notice that the project would lead to loss of valuable biodiversity and affect the primitive Kadar tribes in the project area.

The Ministry had cleared the163-MW project in the Chalakudy river in 2007 amid protests from environmental activists.

The State government maintains the stance that it has the right to proceed with the work on the project as the mandatory clearances has been obtained.