‘Lakshadweep island Parali I has vanished’

Research points to coastal erosion

One of the uninhabited islands that is a part of Lakshadweep has vanished due to coastal erosion and another four such territories in the sea are shrinking fast, claims a new study.

Parali I island, part of Bangaram atoll, which had an area of 0.032 in 1968 has been completely eroded, resulting in its inundation, says researcher R.M. Hidayathulla.

Mr. Hidayathulla, who is from Androth in Lakshadweep, was awarded a doctoral degree in July this year by Calicut University in Kerala for his work entitled “Studies on coastal erosion in selected uninhabited islands of lakshadweep archipelago’. He conducted studies on the biodiversity of five uninhabited islands — Bangaram, Thinnakara, Parali I, II and III, of which Parali I has been inundated, he said.

It has been noticed that all the five islets of Bangaram atoll had undergone coastal erosion, his report said.

“The results are indicative of the urgent measures to be implemented on each islet of the atoll to check further erosion.. It is also recommended to check the feasibility of a bio protection strategy using mangroves, in addition to the conventional physical protection measures,” said Mr. Hidayathulla.

Mr. Hidayathulla’s mentor C.C. Harilal said the submergence of Parali I was noticed when he visited the Bangram atoll in 2011.

GIS reports

The data obtained were processed using Remote Sensing (RS) and Geographic Information System (GIS) software. “One island has submerged.. We can say Lakshadweep now is not an archipelago of 36 islands,” Mr. Harilal said.

“Since the absence of this island (Parali I) is noticed in both observations carried out in 2003 and 2007, it is assumed that the island has been subjected to complete erosion during 1968-2003 periods and an assessment of the exact year of its inundation requires data analysis for a span of 35 years extending from 1968,” said the study.

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