C. Jaishankar

RAMANATHAPURAM: The pig menace has posed a health hazard to citizens, whose repeated pleas to authorities have evoked only a lukewarm response.

It is common to see herds of pig roaming in about every nook and corner of the town. While many people encroached upon major portions of a number of ‘ooranies’, which have to serve the lifeline of dwellers for drinking water needs, the remaining areas have been encroached upon by pig herds.

The virtual transformation of ooranies as collection points for drainage channels has come as a boon to pig rearers.

The Pamboorani, Chidambaram Pillai ‘oorani’, Pallivasal ‘oorani’ and some more ‘ooranies’ have now become breeding grounds for not only mosquitoes but also for pigs.

It is common to see herds of pigs at Velipattinam, old bus-stand, Uzhavar Santhai, Pulikara Street, Anna Nagar, Moolakothalam, Vana Sankariamman street and in most of the slum areas.

The pig rearers have not spared the ugly surrounding and open areas inside the Government Hospital too for the nursery of pigs. At least 75 to 100 pigs can be seen inside and outside the Government Hospital.

It is no secret that the open places at the Tamil Nadu Housing Board Colony in the Collectorate complex are attracting herds of pigs because drain water flowing in the colony has created many ponds in the complex.

Many of the places in Pattinamkathan and Sakkarakottai panchayats, where new residential colonies have come up, have also been affected by the menace.

According to a rough estimate, the current population of pigs is stated to be 2000 to 2500.

Though the Ramanathapuram Municipal Council had passed resolutions in the past to take effective measures to control the pig menace, the prevailing situation shows that they are yet to act.

Collecctor R. Vasuki told The Hindu that she would study the problem with the officials concerned and take follow up action.

K.V. Balakrishnan, Municipal Commissioner, Ramanathapuram, said he would launch a special drive and control the menace within a week.