Kozhikode

Group of activists attacked at Kakkadampoyil

Green concerns: The course of the Thenaruvi rivulet blocked using boulders at Kakkdampoyil. The course of the rivulet has been diverted.

Green concerns: The course of the Thenaruvi rivulet blocked using boulders at Kakkdampoyil. The course of the rivulet has been diverted.  

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They were on a visit to find out environmental violations

A group of activists, who visited Kakkadampoyil to assess the ecological damage there, were allegedly attacked by anti-social elements near the quarry at Thenaruvi on Sunday.

The group of around 50 activists led by social critic M.N. Karassery, activists Kusumam Joseph and K. Ajitha, environmentalists C.R. Neelakantan and Azad visited the village along the Western Ghats to find out the extend of environmental violations by the water theme park owned by P.V. Anwar, MLA, and a quarry at Thenaruvi.

Kerala Nadisamrakshana Samiti secretary T.V. Rajan, who were part of the group, said that around 200 ‘goons’ were waiting for them near the water theme park. However, they did not meet in the beginning as the group of activists decided to visit the quarry first. Only half of the group could visit the quarry as the rest were blocked by the goons, who allegedly rushed to Thenaruvi as they knew that the activists had reached there. The police were late to react, he alleged.

“The goons manhandled some of the activists and snatched their mobile phones away. The photographs taken in the phones were deleted by force. One activist was taken in a vehicle and abandoned on the road later,” Mr. Rajan said.

Prof. Kusumam Joseph and Vinod, a journalist, sustained minor injuries in the incident.

Upon return from Kakkadampoyil, the activists filed a complaint with the Director General of Police and the Superintendent of Police (Kozhikode Rural). They later organised a protest meeting at S.K. Square in the city.

‘Serious encroachments’

Mr. Rajan said there were serious encroachments on Thenaruvi, the rivulet that originates in the Western Ghats and later joins the Chaliyar. The course of the rivulet has been blocked and its course diverted, he said.

On the other hand, the quarry lacked proper approach roads, facilities to store the explosives or a watchman’s shelter. The mandatory green belt around it, to ward off dust, is also missing.

A lot of local people had accompanied the activists to the quarry including Thresyamma and Sisily, who had complained against it.

“We will go ahead with the protest. We plan to visit the water theme park another day,” Mr. Rajan said.

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Printable version | Dec 7, 2019 10:03:24 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/kozhikode/group-of-activists-attacked-at-kakkadampoyil/article29612380.ece

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