Questions on efficacy of STP at Sabarimala

Apathy on the part of TDB,HPC, govt. agencies alleged

July 06, 2016 12:00 am | Updated September 18, 2016 11:54 am IST - PATHANAMTHITTA

: The flow of filth into the Pampa from human waste collection tanks at the Sabarimala Sannidhanam even after the commissioning of a 5-mld modern sewage treatment plant (STP) six months ago has thrown up questions over the efficacy of the sewage treatment project.

Talking to The Hindu , several experts criticised the alleged apathy on the part of the Travancore Devaswom Board (TDB), the high-power committee (HPC) for implementation of the Sabarimala Master Plan, and various government agencies towards taking prompt steps to ensure foolproof functioning of the STP.

Kerala State Pollution Control Board (PCB) chairman K. Sajeevan and environmental engineer Santhoshkumar said the absence of a proper sewerage grid connecting various collection tanks with the plant was a major problem confronting the project. The TDB and HPC should initiate coordinated efforts to sort out the issues, they said.

Mr. Sajeevan said the PCB would issue another notice to the TDB soon, directing the latter to comply with various directives issued by it in this regard on an emergency basis and avoid legal action. Formation of a well-designed sewerage grid was the urgent need at Sabarimala, he said.

Flaws noticed

Special Technical Committee member of the HPC Ajith Haridas said he had noticed many flaws in the functioning of the STP during his inspection of the plant in January.

All such technical issues are remaining unattended. He said the plant started operations in haste without the required seed sludge.

Dr. Haridas said he had also pointed out mistakes in the installation of certain machinery at the plant.

Experts from the National Environmental Engineering Research Institute in Nagpur also noticed non-functioning of the Upflow Anaerobic Sludge Blanket Reactor (UASBR) and Ozonation system that constitute the main part of the treatment process.

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