Tamil Nadu

Effluent discharge into water bodies continues in Tirupur

Untreated effluents being discharged clandestinely into stormwater drains in Tirupur mostly during morning hours or when it rains.— Photo: R. VIMAL KUMAR  

Farmers in Tirupur and its hinterland, who have faced the brunt of the indiscriminate discharge of industrial effluents into the water bodies for the past many decades, are yet again becoming concerned.

Untreated effluents, mostly containing dyes and chemicals in high concentration, are now seen let off clandestinely once again in large quantities through storm water drains into water bodies or into open areas with the discharge mostly happening during the early morning hours or during rain.

As per the directive of Madras High Court, zero liquid discharge (ZLD) should be strictly followed in Tirupur knitwear cluster during the effluent treatment process.

But even after the Madras High Court ordered closure of all dyeing units and bleaching units in Tirupur in January 2011, for causing pollution, the menace of illegal discharge continued in frequent spells.

Many hundreds of dyeing units, including the member dyeing units of various prominent CETPs and unregistered ones, were caught for illegal discharge of untreated effluents since 2011.

It was only a few days ago, the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board issued notices to one Common Effluent Treatment Plant and two Individual Effluent Treatment Plants here after Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) level in streams situated in the nearby areas outside the plants were found to be as high as 13,000 parts per million against the permissible level of 2,100 ppm.

K.C.M. Balasubramanian, a retired agriculture economist and a farmer, said that the TNPCB had not been very strict. “Otherwise, how can one dare to violate the court directions on ZLD norms even now?,” he quipped.

K. Duraisaminathan, district secretary of Tirupur Groundwater Protection Movement, pointed out that indiscriminate effluent discharge through drains were more visible at Mudalipalayam, Kasipalayam and Jamunai Odai (a tributary of River Noyyal) areas. “This pollutes groundwater too and stunts crops growth,” he added.

An official of TNPCB told The Hindu that the Board had been conducting frequent checks to curb illegal discharge, but manpower shortage was proving to be a big hindrance.

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Printable version | Feb 27, 2021 8:56:37 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/effluent-discharge-into-water-bodies-continues-in-tirupur/article7163882.ece

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