The Madurai Bench of Madras High Court had dismissed the petition to stop supply of the river water to two multi-national cola companies. The judgment allowing the firms to draw water had triggered widespread protests in Tirunelveli.
On Friday, a group of environmental activists decided to stage a protest. But police denied them permission. Undeterred, they started clearing the amalai plants in the river at Vannarapettai in the town. “Cleaning the river is also a form of protest, as it is the duty of the officials and the government,” they said. They further added that when people take up the work of government in their own hands, know that it is a form of protest to show their lack of trust on the officials entrusted with the works. “Our protest will continue through our constructive works. We will ensure that water supply is not affected because of the ruling,” one of the activists said.
Meanwhile, a Shiv Sena functionary Ramesh threatened to commit suicide by jumping from the top of a water tank opposite to the Tirunelveli railway junction. He wanted the authorities to withdraw the permission granted to the cola firms to draw water. Tension prevailed for a while in the area as large number of people started crowding around him. Officials held talks with the district president of the party and ensured that his demands would be sent to the government. Later, he climbed down from the water tank.
Missing link : A look at Thamirabarani -Karumeni-Nambiyaru Scheme
- Conceived by the DMK regime in February 2009
- 60,000 cubic feet of water prevented from going into sea in the project
- INR 369 cr. allotted for the project
- To cover dry areas like Sathankulam, Thisayanvilai and Valliyur in Thoothukudi and Tirunelveli districts.
- Project cost escalated to INR 896 cr.
- 50,000 hectares of land to be irrigated if the project was completed
- Put in back-burner during AIADMK regime