Kerala

Initiative to reclaim canals in Kuttanad

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CanKuttanad, a joint effort of local bodies, IIT-B and KILA

Picturesque streams and canals are the lifeline of Kuttanad. With the construction of roads, many of them faded into obscurity and have been reduced to drainages due to waste dumping.

Now, CanKuttanad, a joint initiative involving local bodies in the region, Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, (IIT-B), and the Kerala Institute of Local Administration (KILA), is set to reclaim streams and canals with people’s participation.

As part of the initiative, villagers brought an old canal back to life at Nedumudy in May 2019. Once a navigable waterway, the 2.5-km-long Thottuvathalathodu flowing through Wards 5, 6 and 7 in Nedumudy grama panchayat lost its glory due to waste dumping and aquatic weed infestation.

Restoration of canal

As part of the restoration of the canal, the villagers removed aquatic weed, deepened the channel and increased the height of bunds.

As the next step, the Nedumudy grama panchayat joined hands with the Champakulam block panchayat to restore 40 km of canals and rivulets in the local body.

Officials said that the canals would be deepened and protected using coir geotextiles. The silt removed would be used to strengthen outer bounds in the region. The project was expected to give a fillip to the farming sector in Kuttanad, officials said.

Canalpy

CanKuttanad is implemented in line with Canalpy (CanAlappuzha), an initiative to reclaim the canals in Alappuzha town.

The technical expertise for the implementation of CanKuttanad is provided by KILA, IIT-B and Canalpy. With the tagline ‘canals are not drains’, Canalpy strives to clean, sustain and inspire the people to take care of their surroundings and make a difference to society.

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Printable version | Jan 23, 2020 10:21:01 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/initiative-to-reclaim-canals-in-kuttanad/article30480853.ece

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