KERALA

Piggery unit posing health hazard in Thiruvalla

POLLUTION MENACE: The piggery unit in the residential area of Kuttappuzha-Muliyannoorkara adjoining the Kaviyoor wetlands in Thiruvalla .

POLLUTION MENACE: The piggery unit in the residential area of Kuttappuzha-Muliyannoorkara adjoining the Kaviyoor wetlands in Thiruvalla .  

Local action council submits memorandum to Chief Minister; plans to move court

Radhakrishnan Kutoor

PATHANAMTHITTA: A piggery unit in the thickly populated municipal limits of Kuttappuzha-Muliyannoorkara in Thiruvalla is reportedly posing serious health hazard to hundreds of people residing in the locality.

The local action council, which has been campaigning against the health menace posed by the pig farm and unauthorised slaughterhouse in the residential area behind Mar Thoma College in Kuttappuzha, is planning to move court against the inaction on the part of officials in curbing the pollution menace.

According to action council leader Thomas Mathew, the pig farm was started as a `makeshift' poultry, misleading the local people, a few years ago. The `poultry' was converted into a piggery in the next few months, disregarding protests from the local people. Everyday waste from slaughter houses and hotels in the town is brought to the pig farm as food for the pigs and the animal waste is buried in the courtyard itself, in gross violation of the prevailing rules and regulations in this regard, he alleged.

"Crows often drop the animal waste into wells in the surrounding areas and we cannot use the well water for domestic purposes," laments Ms. Santhamma, a housewife.

Prof. Mathew alleged that the unscientific burial of waste in the piggery courtyard coupled with the dumping of filth in the adjoining Kaviyoor wetlands have polluted groundwater, leading to well water pollution in the locality.

He said there was high incidence of allergic diseases such as asthma and skin ailments in the locality.

The Health Department has been turning a blind eye to the problem, he alleged.

The filth flows freely from the piggery into the Kaviyoor wetlands and reaches Kuttappauzha canal that empties out into Kuttanad, posing serious health risk to the people residing on the banks of the canal, he alleged.

The pollution problem indirectly affects the Malankara Public School and the Women's hostel of the Mar Thoma College situated on the banks of the canal. A.T. Samuel, Principal of the school, is among those who have signed the memorandum prepared by the action council.

The action council leaders allege that the piggery unit and the slaughterhouse have been functioning in the residential area without obtaining certification from the Health Department, Pollution Control Board or the local self-Government. Prof. Mathew said with the onset of monsoon, the pollution is most likely to spread to more areas.

The council has submitted a memorandum to the Chief Minister, Health Minister, local MLA, District Collector, Vigilance Director, Municipal council and Pollution Control Board.

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