Fishermen continue protest against Tantransco towers
Apart from fishermen from villages near Ennore, fishers from villages from Pazhaverkadu in the north of the city and Kovalam from south of the city took part in the protest.
CHENNAI: Only a week after staging a protest with boats in Kosasthalaiyar River, scores of fishermen held a demonstration against the erection of transmission towers by Tantransco inside Kosasthalaiyar River in Ennore, on Thursday.
Apart from fishermen from villages near Ennore, fishers from villages from Pazhaverkadu in the north of the city and Kovalam from south of the city took part in the protest. The protestors alleged that fly ash, coal waste and effluent from thermal power plants for the past 30 years has affected production of fish, prawns and oysters in Kosasthalaiyar River.
"This has financially affected the fishermen around Ennore. Meanwhile, Tantransco is erecting transmission towers in the river by violating environmental clearances. Construction waste has been dumped inside the river, " one of the fishermen said.
He riled that the construction waste and basement of the towers impede movement of fishing boats, and construction waste injure fishermen who wade in the river while fishing.
K Bharathi, president of South India Fishermen Welfare Association, who took part in the demonstration, said that the hundreds of fishermen from other fishing villages in the city took part in the protest based on an invitation from Ennore fishermen. "However, the police have stopped several fishermen coming from other villages enroute and forced them to return, " Bharathi alleged.
He urged the government to utilize the CSR Fund (Corporate Social Responsibility Fund) collected from industries in Ennore to restore the natural ecosystem rather than spending the money on other projects.
"Among the river mouths in the city, Kosasthalaiyar River mouth was rich in fishes. But, industries have depleted the resources over the years, " he added.