Coimbatore

Brick kilns continue production even after receiving closure notice: activists

Though the district administration served closure notices on 141 brick kilns in Thadagam Valley for various violations, activists allege such units were still functioning in five panchayats.

The notice had directed the kilns to stop production immediately and to show cause within 15 days of receiving the notice as to why their units should not be closed for violating rules.

Sources with Chinna Thadagam, Nanjundapuram, 24 Veerapandi, Somaiyampalayam and Pannimadai panchayats said that they had served notices on 141 brick kilns.

“The manufacturers were running the units violating rules. They are continuing operations even after the District Collector served notices on them directing to shut down operations. This has to be viewed as a deliberate act of challenging the district administration and the Government. The Collector should instruct officers to stop operations,” said S. Ganesh from Thadagam.

Permits

The notice said that manufacturers had to obtain permission from the Collector as per the Tamil Nadu Minor Mineral Concession Rules, 1959. Permits issued by the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board (TNPCB), State Environment Impact Assessment Authority and no objection certificate from the Hill Area Conservation Authority (if applicable) were required for the same.

Mr. Ganesh claimed of having photographic evidences of brick kilns operating even after receiving the notice. Environmental activist K. Mohanraj wanted the district administration to set up a mechanism to monitor the violation.

However, P. Dharamaraj, president of brick kiln operators association, denied that brick making was continuing after receiving notice from the district administration.

“We are not challenging the district administration. We are in talks with the Government and TNPCB, seeking to relax norms for the business that has been going on for three decades,” he said.

Sources with the district administration said that it was expecting a direction from the Madras High Court or the Government on the violations and further action to be taken.

TNPCB has also served notices on brick kilns in the valley that were operating without permit from board under provisions of the Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974 and the Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act.

The notice directed the violators to show cause within 15 days from its receipt, as to why penal action should not be taken against them for operating without valid consent from the Board.

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Printable version | Feb 27, 2020 11:11:30 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Coimbatore/brick-kilns-continue-production-even-after-receiving-closure-notice-activists/article30070754.ece

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