PWD’s apathy in removing bunds on Porur lake triggers panic in residents

Porur and neighbouring areas residents fear the repeat of last year’s unprecedented flooding as the Public Works Department is dragging its feet on the removal of bunds constructed across Porur Lake. The National Green Tribunal rap earlier has failed to move the PWD into visible action.
PWD’s apathy in removing bunds on Porur lake triggers panic in residents
An earthmover removes silt from the Porur Lake


With the memory of last deluge still fresh in their minds, residents of Porur, Iyyappanthangal and Paraniputhur raise apprehension over the apathy of officials in maintaining the Porur Lake ahead of the north east monsoon. 
“After the NGT took the PWD to task for not removing the bunds across the Porur Lake, the PWD officials brought a couple of earth movers to remove it. But later, the machines left the lake and the officials said that the water must recede further to carry out any work,” sources said. 
Some of the residents added that even after the bunds were clearly visible, the PWD failed to carry out removal and desilting works. It may be noted that the state had allocated Rs 20 crore to the PWD in 2011 itself to take up improvement works in the lake. 
A senior PWD engineer told DTNext that last week the officials from the department inspected the bunds and they were gearing up to remove it. Admitting that water has considerably receded, the engineer said, “we will bring the earth movers back to remove the bunds.” When asked if they could finish the work before the north east monsoon intensifies, the official said, “yes we will.” 
But the residents are skeptical. “We cannot predict the quantum of rain. The north east monsoon may intensify anytime and if the officials keep moving at such a slow pace, the lake would have breaches again this year. We fear another flood,” said A Murugan, a resident of Paraniputhur. He dreaded the mere thought of it after undergoing harrowing time last year due to the breaches in the lake. 
Former special chief engineer, PWD, Chennai A Veerappan said “It is extremely unpleasant that the Porur Lake, which was once a drinking water source for the city cannot be restored on time. At least now the PWD has to act in haste to remove the bunds on the lake.”

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