Chennai

Encroachments on waterbody in Neelankarai removed

Ilegally constructions being demolished in Neelankarai.

Ilegally constructions being demolished in Neelankarai.   | Photo Credit: M. Karunakaran

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11 buildings razed; pond will be restored, say officials

The Revenue Department on Monday began demolition of 11 buildings, including nine shops, that were illegally constructed on a waterbody spread over 12 grounds in Neelankarai.

Officials of Chennai Corporation and the police were present at the location which was once known as the Ellai Kuttai. The waterbody is located on East Coast Road, near Kazura Garden 1st Street, between Palavakkam and Neelankarai.

Srilakshmi Mohan Rao, vice-president of the Kazura Garden Residents Welfare Association, said the demolition drive was a victory for residents in the area.

“We have been trying to protect and retrieve the waterbody for over 20 years now. When our efforts of informing brokers and builders did not help and they got power and water connections, the waterbody vanished under the encroachments. That was when we went to court, which ruled in our favour. This time, action has been taken due to our contempt petition,” she explained.

Sources said that illegal constructions had taken place with the collusion of local politicians and officials of various departments. Sources in the Revenue Department said that after the buildings were demolished and debris removed, the pond would be dug up and restored to its original dimensions. “Initially, commercial buildings are being removed. The residential buildings will come next,” said an official.

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Printable version | Dec 10, 2019 4:46:42 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/encroachments-on-waterbody-in-neelankarai-removed/article28752794.ece

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