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PWD blocking karuvelam drive: Ryots

Though the High Court has given strict instructions to remove seemai karuvelam from all the water bodies, officials of the Public Works Department (PWD) are not allowing us to carry out the drive, complained farmers during the grievance day meeting that was held at the Madurai Collectorate, on Friday.

PWD blocking karuvelam drive: Ryots
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Farmers condemning a PWD official at the grievance day meeting in Madurai

Madurai

The farmers said that as soon as the High Court gave instructions, Collector K Veera Raghav Rao had carried out an extensive campaign to remove the trees from water bodies across the district. “As we too wanted to be part of the mission, we had approached the PWD for permission but the officials are only making us sweat. 

We were initially asked to approach the Forest department for permission, but they directed us back to the PWD,” said the farmers. Hence, the district administration should direct the PWD to give permission to uproot seemai karuvelam in water bodies across the district, the officials demanded. 

District Revenue Officer (DRO) Velusamy then told the farmers that only if it was a notified land they need to obtain permission from the Forest department, otherwise there was no need for official clearance. He also directed PWD officials to give permission to farmers to uproot the seemai karuvelam as it was the need of the hour. 

Denying the allegations, a PWD official said that what the farmers were claiming was far from the truth. He also went on to say that the farmers were not actually interested in clearing the seemai karuvelam, but were keen on plundering the soil in water bodies. 

These statements evoked strong reaction from the farmers who shouted slogans against the PWD official and condemned him. 

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