New sand quarry opened at Kilikoodu on Kollidam river

Lorries line up to transport sand from Uhamarseeli village at Tiruchi on Wednesday.

Lorries line up to transport sand from Uhamarseeli village at Tiruchi on Wednesday. | Photo Credit: M. Moorthy

The Water Resources Department (WRD) has opened a new sand quarry at Kilikoodu on the Kollidam river.

It is the first sand quarry for heavy vehicles in the district since the closure of sand quarries about three years ago. For bullock carts, the WRD reopened quarries at Thalakudi and Madhavaperumalkoil on the Kollidam a few weeks ago.

The quarry has come up on about five hectares of reach on the Kollidam. The reach is said to have accumulated heaps of sand when the river had inflow for several days in 2020-21.

If the size of the quarry is more than five hectares, it requires the authorities to conduct a public hearing to solicit the views of the public, environmentalists, civic activists, villagers and other stakeholders. Based on the outcome, the environment clearance is given. Without the environment clearance, no quarry can be formed. Since the quarry at Kilikoodu has been set up on less than five hectares, it does not require a public hearing, sourced told The Hindu.

The quarry has been set up after receiving all mandatory clearances. As per the standard operating procedure, a taluk-level task force visited the quarry site. After studying various aspects, it submitted a report to the district administration. Based on it, the Collector issued a proceeding to extract sand.

Since the opening of the quarry a few days ago, activities at Kilikoodu, a remote village located close to Grandanicut, have become hectic with the operation of hundreds of lorries. The lorries are lined up in large numbers to load sand at the depot.

Officials say no vehicles, except those engaged in excavation, will be allowed to load directly at the quarry. Sand from the quarry will be transported to the depot, which is being established at Thirupanjeeli, and lorries can load sand at the depot. The public and the lorry owners have to book online for purchase of sand. The operation is being monitored through CCTV.

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Printable version | Aug 10, 2022 10:46:33 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Tiruchirapalli/new-sand-quarry-opened-at-kilikoodu-on-kollidam-river/article65553725.ece