Ten establishments found discharging sewage into river

Ten establishments, including high-rises and vehicle service stations, have been found discharging wastewater into the Konothupuzha in violation of the norms, according to the findings by the Kerala State Pollution Control Board.

The agency has issued closure notices to two vehicle service stations in Thripunithura found discharging wastewater into the river without installing proper effluent treatment plants. Four apartments were found operating the sewage treatment plants without the permission of the board while the system in one apartment was found faulty. An apartment was pulled up for not having a sewage treatment plant to treat the wastewater as per the norms prescribed by the board. A letter has been issued to the secretary of the residents’ association to ensure immediate compliance.

The lapses in the sewage management system were evident as the water samples taken from three points along the river near Irumpanam bridge, Kolenchery bridge, and Andhakarathodu revealed higher levels of total coliform count, indicating faecal contamination. The total coliform count in these three points were 5,400 cfu/100 ml (colony forming unit, cfu for short, is a unit for estimating the number of bacteria or other micro-organisms in a sample); 7,000 cfu/100 ml; and 70,000 cfu/100 ml respectively. The coliform count at the collection point in Andhakarathodu was 28 times higher than the maximum permissible limit.

According to the Central Pollution Control Board, the maximum permissible limit of faecal coliform in water used for organised outdoor bathing is 2,500 cfu/100 ml, while the desirable value is only 500 cfu/100 ml. The Konothupuzha lies between the Champakkara canal and the Vembanad lake and runs through Thripunithura municipality and Chottanikkara, Mulanthuruthy, Udayamperoor, and Amballoor grama panchayats.

The National Green Tribunal had asked the board to submit the status of implementation of the Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016, in these local bodies located along the river. A report submitted by the board last week pointed out that Thripunithura municipality was yet to submit the request for authorisation required to manage waste as per the rules. Illegal dumping of waste in open places was also found in the region.

The secretary of the municipality informed the board that steps were taken to remove the illegal outlets from commercial establishments and high-rises into the Konothupuzha river, besides initiating measures to install surveillance cameras along the riverside.

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Printable version | Sep 16, 2021 8:43:06 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/ten-establishments-found-discharging-sewage-into-river/article35594735.ece

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