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- Coimbatore civic body demolishes over 100 illegal houses at Ganapathy
While 107 houses and two temples were demolished along the Rabindranath Tagore Road, 19 houses were demolished at Maniyakarampalayam.Nivedha Selvam | TNN | November 18, 2018, 08:55 IST
COIMBATORE: The Coimbatore Corporation on Saturday demolished 126 houses and two temples that were constructed illegally on water bodies and along the margins of the highway at Ganapathy.
While 107 houses and two temples were demolished along the Rabindranath Tagore Road, 19 houses were demolished at Maniyakarampalayam.
“Eviction notices were issued to the occupants of the encroachments three months ago and alternative accommodations were provided,” a corporation official said.
“Most the residents had shifted to the housing unit of the Tamil Nadu Slum Clearance Board (TNSCB) at Keeranatham. The corporation had paid for the apartments,” he told TOI.
The corporation has been expediting the eviction drive to implement the lake restoration and rejuvenation projects under its smart city mission. It had identified 4,263 encroachments in the city limit. Over 1,000 such encroachments have already been cleared.
“We plan to complete the eviction drive this month,” the official added.
- The hidden history of lakes in Coimbatore
The nature trail is an eye opener as it helped participants to know the historical background of lakes in Coimbatore. A group of enthusiasts taking part in the trail at Singanallur lake in the city on Sunday.
Nature trail for public being held on first and third Sunday of every month
The nature trail at Singanallur lake on Sunday became a unique walk for participants as local historian C.R. Elangovan unfolded to them the history of lakes in Coimbatore.
According to Mr. Elangovan, the history of lakes in Coimbatore dates back to the 10th century when the region witnessed an increase in migration of people and livelihood shifted from cattle rearing to agriculture.
Kongu Cholas, Mysore rulers, Vijayanagara empire, and Madurai Naickers maintained the lakes over the period.
There are epigraphical evidences of systems followed by the Kongu Cholas for the maintenance of these lakes that are linked to rivers through canals. But the waterbodies did not get prominence during the British rule and the situation continued in the post-independence era, said Mr. Elangovan.
He pointed that the lakes were very important to the lives of the population in the region before urbanisation as they largely depended on agriculture.
The nature trail was an eye opener as it helped participants to know the historical background of lakes in Coimbatore. Such knowledge will help the public to understand the need of protecting these water bodies, said K. Saravana Kumar, one of the participants.
C. Kunhikannan, Scientist, Institute of Forest Genetics and Tree Breeding, briefed the participants on medicinal plants in urban wetlands at the nature trail held on November 4.
Jointly conducted by Coimbatore Corporation and Centre for Urban Biodiversity Conservation and Education, the one-km nature trail for public is held on first and third Sunday of every month led by various experts in various fields.
- High court seeks report on land grabbing in Ketti town panchayat Shantha Thiagarajan | Nov 23, 2018, 00:25 IST
Udhagamandalam: The Madras high court on Thursday directed the Nilgiris collector to submit a detailed report within two weeks on buildings, including domestic as well as commercial, constructed on agriculture land in Ketti town panchayat in the district.
The high court gave the direction based on a PIL petition filed one and half year ago against the mushrooming of new buildings on agriculture lands of Ketti valley.
When the case came up for hearing on Thursday, justice Mahadevan passed the order.
“After getting the report, if necessary, the order may be extended to the whole of Nilgiris,” the court observed, adding, “If failed to submit the report before the stipulated time frame, the Nilgiris collector may be summoned.”
Nilgiris collector J Innocent Divya told TOI, “I am yet to receive the order. After receiving the order, we will comply with it accordingly.”
Counsel for the petitioner Elephant Rajendran told TOI, “Besides directing the Nilgiris collector to submit a detailed report on buildings constructed on agriculture land in Ketti town panchayat, the court also observed that all the buildings constructed on agriculture land should be removed.”
According to an activist, outsiders are grabbing land in the form of fields for real estate purposes. If the government and the local public do not wake up to halt this trend and implement strict town planning and master plan norms, Nilgiri hills would be ruined.
In hill station like Nilgiris, there are rules of town planning, slope stability, environmental safeguards and aesthetics to be observed.
They must be maintained in their basic natural state for generations to come, he said.
The irony is that when there exists classification of lands such as agriculture zone, residential zone and commercial zone in Ooty, panchayats in the Nilgiris lack classification of lands, a loophole for land grabbers. As the hills is losing grounds to real estate, the foremost need of the Nilgiris district is to classify lands which would serve as a basic tool to filter unwanted developments at the elementary level itself.
- Survey for 24x7 water project to conclude soon Nivedha Selvam | Nov 23, 2018, 00:25 IST
Coimbatore: The much-awaited 24x7 water supply project is gradually inching closer to the implementation stage with the French firm Suez Projects Pvt Ltd, which bagged the contract, completing more than 95% of consumer, topography, network and geographic information surveys. A corporation official said the firm was likely to conclude all the surveys within a month and start actual work in near future.
The French firm had been conducting these surveys since January to study the water requirement of the public, the present condition of pipelines and the elevation points of land, said an official involved in the project. “The company has completed topographic survey for about 1,444km out of the 1,500km and the survey is likely to be completed in another 10 days. The consumer survey has been done in 40 out of the 60 wards and the remaining wards might be covered within a month,” the official, who didn’t want to be named, said.
While the firm had already completed the network survey, it is yet to map household connections in 20 wards into their software as it is being done along with the geographic information survey, the official said.
The French firm, meanwhile, is expected to implement the project in wards 23 and 24 of RS Puram on a pilot basis from December, the official said. “Trial pits had been dug at multiple points across the region to check the condition of existing pipelines, which come in three types - cast iron pipes, PVC pipes and asbestos cement pipes. All the PVC and asbestos cement pipes will be replaced with cast iron pipes.”
The cast iron pipelines would be replaced only if they were in bad shape, the official said and added additional pipes would be laid in cases where the pipelines are in good condition, but their diameter is too small to meet the water requirement of the public.
Pointing out that the pipeline network was 58km long in RS Puram, where there are 6,600 water connections, the official said the length of pipelines to be relaid would be determined based on the requirement of population in the region in 2044. “The designing phase is still in progress.”
The French firm is expected to complete the project in RS Puram by April next year. “After that it will implement the project in other wards one by one,” the official said.
The project, which was the last to be sanctioned under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURN), would be implemented at a cost of Rs 2,961 crore. The contract was given to the French firm for a period of 26 years – one year for study, four years for implementation and 21 years for maintenance.
- Tedious land acquisition process leaves owners high and dry tnn | Nov 24, 2018, 00:14 IST
Coimbatore: Nearly 10 days after municipal administration and rural development minister S P Velumani announced that the state government has sanctioned Rs 75 crore for acquisition of land for the airport expansion, the money is yet to reach the district. Landowners say the announcement was just an eyewash before the elections and the money announced will suffice only for 10 acres.
On November 10, the minister had announced that the government had sanctioned Rs 75 crore out of the Rs 1,500 crore allotted for the land acquisition. Instead of assuring landowners in the area that the acquisition process is on track, the announcement has given them jitters.
“At Rs 7.5 lakh a cent, Rs 75 crore will suffice only for 10 acres. They say funds for block seven have been cleared. Block seven alone is 11.22 acres. When will money come for the rest of the 7th block,” asks former panchayat leader and one of the landowners in block 16, C R Subramanian. “In total, they must acquire 487 acres of privately-owned land,” he adds.
“It has also not been published in the gazette yet,” he says. “This is an eyewash ahead of the Lok Sabha elections,” he adds.
Officials in the district administration admit that the cheque for the promised Rs 75 crore is expected to come only next week. “The minister in his speech said it is a Rs 1,500 crore project. As per calculations, the land acquisition costs are more than Rs 2,000 crore. Why is the government changing the figure now,” argues another landowner K Suresh.
“If they are sanctioning funds in bits and pieces for just one block, when will they finish paying and acquiring 23 blocks of private land,” he asks.
“We are so frustrated that we are willing to take the money if it comes in a lumpsum and restart our lives elsewhere, but this delaying is almost like harassment. With the money we have agreed to, we can’t buy an alternate land anywhere else,” he says.
Other land owners agree. They say with the compensation of Rs 7.5 lakh a cent, they can buy an alternate piece of land only at Karaiyampalayam, which is even after Arasur. So, how would they travel all the way to Coimbatore for work and studies every day. “Many people are considering taking bank loans to buy a new property and plan to pay it off once the acquisition money comes through. But until then, EMIs will be a burden,” says Jagannathan, a Singanallur landowner whose land has been leased by the airport.
Landowners are upset over the ambiguity regarding tax deduction. “We clearly told the minister and every official that 30% tax should not be deducted. Now, they say they will deduct tax. Once you reduce depreciation for a 10-year-old house, what will remain? Can we build a roof over our heads with that sum,” asks Subramanian.
- Govt approves model road, lake restoration projects worth Rs 204cr Nivedha Selvam | Nov 24, 2018, 00:16 IST
Coimbatore: After three failed attempts, the city corporation on Thursday obtained government nod to implement five projects worth Rs 204crore under the smart city mission.
In the first phase of the lake rejuvenation and restoration project, the civic body will give a facelift to Periyakulam lake, Selva Chintamani lake and Valankulam lake at a cost of Rs 152crore. Several micro sewage treatment plants will be set up and decentralised natural waste water treatment system (Dewats) will be employed to treat sewage water entering the lakes. Check dams and sluice gates will be constructed to prevent overflowing. Non-motorised tracks will be set up along the lakes.
Under the model road project, the corporation will redesign Race Course Road at a cost of Rs 37crore and TV Samy Road for Rs 15crore. The roads will be made pedestrian-friendly. Vegetation along the roads will be increased and rainwater harvesting systems will be set up.
The civic body will float tender for all the projects after receiving technical approval, a senior corporation official said. “Most likely, the tenders will be floated within 15 days. Once the contractors are finalized, the implementation phase will commence simultaneously,” he told TOI.
When the corporation first submitted the lake restoration project at the high-power committee meeting held in July, the implementation cost was estimated to be Rs 357crore, another corporation official said. “After revising the estimated cost for over three times, it was brought down to Rs 152crore. But we have retained most of the proposed components.”
Explaining that the market value is higher than the government fixed schedule of rates (SOR), the official said that initially, 70% of the total cost was estimated as per the government fixed rates and the remaining 30% as per the market value. “Now, we have fixed government approved rates for all the projects, bringing down the cost.”
The approved projects are in addition to the quick-win projects that are being implemented along the three lakes at a cost of Rs 87.88crore. Under the quick-win projects, bunds of Periyakulam lake along the Perur bypass and Valankulam lake along the flyover are being refurbished.
- Dalits seek land allotted to them under special scheme tnn | Nov 27, 2018, 00:49 IST
Tirupur: A group of dalits from Eswara Chettipalayam near Yerakampatti in Dharapuram taluk petitioned the district collector on Monday seeking to return the land gifted to them under a special scheme for landless farmers in 2006.
One of the petitioners A Subbambal of Yerakampatti said, “The state government has given seven acres of agricultural lands to four Arunthathiyar families, which had never possessed lands at Eswara Chettipalayam in 2006. As per the special scheme, two acres of lands can be given to each landless farmer.”
“We started cultivation in the lands but a few months later, revenue officials including the then village administrative officer and tahsildar visited our lands and requested us to return the original pattas of our lands. Since we were illiterates, we did not have any idea about it. And, we gave them as the officials promised to return after some clarifications,” she said.
“But till now, they have not returned the pattas and we have also lost the lands due to the influence of few villagers, who did not want us to own lands. We are now working as agricultural labourers,” said A Thaamarambal, another petitioner.
“It is unacceptable that the officials have betrayed us for the last 12 years, and they have denied our chances of improving our lives, which are miserable due to inadequate incomes. So, the government should intervene and provide the allotted lands to us,” they added.
- Waste from Tirupur to fuel cement factory in dist TNN | Nov 28, 2018, 00:50 IST
Tirupur: The non-biodegradable waste generated in the city corporation limits would soon become fuel to a cement factory on the outskirts of Coimbatore.
The city corporation on Monday signed a letter of intent with a Coimbatore-based private cement factory to dispose non-biodegradable waste safely.
The civic body said it would send about 30 metric tonnes of non-biodegradable wastes daily to ACC Cement plant at Madukarai on the outskirts of Coimbatore which would use them as alternative for firewood.
The city generates 480 metric tonnes of sewage waste in 60 wards, of which 216 metric tonnes are biodegradable and 264 metric tonnes, non-biodegradable. The corporation is trying to create awareness among the residents and commercial establishments to segregate wastes generated by them at source. It believes that micro-level segregation would be the best solution to dispose them safely or derive value out of waste.
However, the segregation of waste has been poor at micro-level so far. “With only a few bulk waste producers have taken steps to segregate waste at source, the corporation is struggling to segregate them. Presently, waste is being dumped in unused stone quarries,” said a corporation official, who didn’t want to be named.
“With the corporation now signing letter of intent with the ACC Cement plant, it could send non-biodegradable waste for recycling,” said city health officer K Boopathy.
“A multinational company has signed a contract to dispose waste at the factory. It will use state-of-art technology to dispose them without affecting the environment,” the health officer told TOI.
“Around 48 metric tonnes of plastic waste are generated in a day in the city corporation limits. Sanitary workers could sell high-value plastics and keep the cash, as per the direction given by the commissionerate of municipal administration. Remaining low-value plastics and other non-biodegradable wastes including rubber and glasses would be sent to the plant,” Boopathy said.
Pointing out that about 30 metric tonnes of such waste were generated in the city in a day, the city health officersaid, “Initially, 15 metric tonnes waste will be sent to the cement factory on Thursday and Friday.”
- Finally, government issues tender notification fordrinking water scheme TNN | Updated: Nov 30, 2018, 13:17 IST
TIRUPUR: The state government has issued a tender notice inviting bids to execute the Athikadavu-Avinashi groundwater recharge and drinking water scheme.
As per the tender notification, applications will be available between November 30 and January 22, 2019, at the office of the superintending engineer (special scheme), public works department (water resources organization), Avinashi circle. Eligible companies should submit their filled-in applications before 3pm on January 23. On the same day, the winner will be selected.
The notification also featured the revised cost of the project (Rs1,532 crore). The project will be implemented on the basis of design, build, operate and transfer (DBOT). So, the successful bidder would deposit 1% of the cost to PWD and operate and maintain the project for 60 months since its inauguration. The project should be completed within 34 months.
As per the project, the pumping facility will be established at downstream of Kalingarayan Anicut, 1km from Bhavani in Erode district.
A captive solar power station with a 30MW capacity will be established to provide electricity for the purpose.
The project aims to provide water for irrigation to drought-prone areas in Coimbatore, Tirupur and Erode districts. It would feed 32 PWD irrigation tanks, 42 panchayat union tanks and 971 ponds in Annur, Avinashi, Tirupur, Sulur, Nambiyur and Perundurai blocks. As many as 24,468 acres of agriculture land will benefit from the scheme, which will also serve as drinking water source.
Welcoming the move, convener of the Federation for Athikadavu-Avinashi groundwater recharge scheme Dr D Prabu said, “Five decades of longing for the project would end soon. All that the farmers wanted is proper execution of the project as mentioned in the detailed project report.”
- Sewage leaking from treatment plant makes life miserable Dec 11, 2018, 00:19 IST
Coimbatore: Untreated sewage from the city corporation’s treatment plant at Ukkadam is flooding the surrounding lanes, a group of residents from Saramedu and Al Ameen Nagar, which falls under wards 74,75 and 76 said in a petition to the collector on Monday.
“The entire city’s sewage is directed to our areas on its way to the corporation sewage treatment plant. Almost daily, there is a leakage from the plant and sewage flows on to our streets,” said Rahoo Nisthar, a resident. “Sewage pools at some places have becomes breeding grounds for mosquitoes, which cause illnesses like dengue.”
The presence of sewage has also led to formation of potholes, said the residents. They also blamed the corporation officials for not relaying the roads after laying underground drainage pipes. “Traffic diversion due to construction of the Ukkadam Flyover has led to light vehicles and two-wheelers taking the interior roads. As a result, the roads are in a bad condition and the additional traffic load has made our roads unmotorable,” said Nisthar. “Our children can no longer ride bicycles to schools. It is very difficult to take elders to hospitals on time,” he added.
- Work under way to prevent flooding of Kikani underpass tnn | Dec 11, 2018, 00:42 IST
A recurring problem of waterlogging in the Kikani underpass will be solved soon as the Coimbatore Corporation has started the drainage work to prevent clogging in times of rain on the lines of mitigation measures carried out at Lanka Corner.
The underpass on Sastri Road near the Kikani Vidhya Mandir gets filled with nearly two-foot water even for a mild shower.
Commuters and residents have been facing trouble in passing the underpass over a long time.
Executive engineer of the city corporation Thirumoorthy said, “There would be drains with grills on the road leading to the underpass to collect excess water even before it flows into the underpass. Most of the gushing water from roads would drain there and will not reach the underpass. The drain will be connected to the main drainage. This is a permanent solution for waterlogging.”
The drains are constructed across road on either side of the underpass, and the water which will flow into the drains due to gravity would be carried to Valankulam through the existing channels along Brookefields road and GoodShed Road.
He said the work would end by next few days and the underpass would be opened for commuters after the curing period probably by December 17. Corporation commissioner K VIjayakarthikeyan had recently approved the plan.
“I hope the waterlogging problem doesn’t persist anymore. I have been in this area since my childhood over 45 years. The corporation would pump out the water, and it had always been a trouble to reach my home during the rainy season. Drainage would break and add to our woes. I am eagerly waiting for the work to get over,” says a woman resident in Ramnagar.
Another corporation worker said he did similar work at Lanka Corner to stop waterlogging during the rainy season.
“The water would drain in the facility here and would not reach the underpass. The drains will have grill facility to open in case of blockage,” he said.
- Entrepreneurs provide sustainable alternatives to plastic P Sangeetha
With the deadline fast approaching, the demand for alternatives for these pollutants is on the rise
| TNN | Dec 17, 2018, 00:00 IST
In less than two weeks, the Tamil Nadu government is all set to ban the use of single-use plastic items, which include non-biodegradable carry bags, plastic cups and water sachets. With the deadline fast approaching, the demand for alternatives for these pollutants is on the rise. We speak to a few entrepreneurs who have been
providing alternatives to disposable plastic...
Start your day with bamboo toothbrushes
It is said that plastic toothbrushes can turn extremely toxic when they start decaying after centuries. So, why leave more carbon print in the over- polluted earth, asks G Venkateswaran of Nature Village, Erode. “Our toothbrushes are made of bamboo and the bristles are made of corn fibre or charcoal. We believe in living in harmony with nature. We provide organic cotton, non-violent silk and natural dyes obtained from fruits, seeds and flowers and roots.” Some of the interesting additions are fibre seats, seat pads, pillows, banana fibre, clay water bottles, bamboo key chains, bamboo straws, bamboo sets and bamboo shaving razor. He adds, “The car seat pad and pillows are filled with banana fibre yarns, pure cotton and vettiver. They are covered with cotton cloth and non-hazardous ink. We have cotton sanitary pads and diapers, organic liquids and cloth wash as well. Though the awareness among people is still low, it’s gradually increasing, especially among youngsters.”
Have your meal using biodegradable cutlery
Marutham foods and Natural Products from Palani offers bio-degradable plates, bowls, trays and lid, made of sustainable natural resources including corn starch. “They are sturdy and suitable for hot, wet and even oily food. They are fit to be used in microwave oven or kept inside the refrigerator. They degrade in a short period and are fully compostable. The important fact is that they do not impact the colour, odour or taste of the food. They do not leave any chemical residue,” says one of its representatives.
Carry bio bags on your next shopping outing
When you step out of home next time, don’t forget to carry a bio-degradable bag. Ecofora of Regeno Ventures has come out with bio-degradable bags, primarily made of tapioca starch and natural additives. “These bags are hundred per cent plastic free and can be recycled after use. We have different varieties of bags — seat covers, shopping bags, carry bags, medical bags and garbage bags. They decompose in 150 days, do not leave toxic residue and are eco-friendly. They are also dissolvable in high temperature. The polythene bag, on the other hand, remains in the landfill for more than 500 years,” says R Soundharya, distributor in the Coimbatore region.
Generating wealth from waste
Tucked away at a residential colony in Saibaba Colony, Coimbatore is Eco Green Unit, which delves into the concept of creating wealth from waste. Discarded banana fibre, coconut shells, areca palm leaves and kora grass have been given a new lease of life by converting them into spoons, plates, glasses, boxes, trays, yoga mats, floor mats, soap trays and pots. Some of these products are not only bio-degradable, but can also be converted into manure. Its founder SK Babu says, “Our unit is located at Madhampatti village, near Siruvani in Coimbatore. We provide training in making areca leaf products, mat weaving, coir pot making and paper bag making. Eco plates and cutlery are healthy and hygienic and are great alternatives to plastics. They are biodegradable and eco-friendly. The pots made of coir can be used in gardening, landscaping and water conservation.”
Go green with your writing
It’s time to go eco-friendly with stationery at work. Coimbatore-based Papcil has come out with pencils made of recycled paper. “We source our raw material from factories and churn out pencils from them. The highlight, however, is the seed pencil. A seed is placed inside a gelatin capsule attached to the pencil. We have seeds of 13 varieties that comprise vegetables like tomatoes and chillies and flowers like marigold. Since the seeds do not last long when kept inside a gelatin capsule, we cover it with coir pith. This can last up to six months. After using the pencil, all you need to do is throw the seed into the soil and water it,” says Gowtham Prasath, its founder.
When babies do their bit for the earth
Disposable diapers and sanitary napkins take many years to decompose and remain in the landfills for a long time. That’s why Pollachi-based Dhivya Sidharth introduced reusable cloth diapers called KiddieHug. “Cloth diapers are water-proof, leak-free, chemical-free, easy to use and one size (customisable for kids weighing 4-17kg). The reusable cloth diapers can be used from birth until the kids get potty trained. These diapers come in attractive colours and the babies need not wear anything over it. They are made from natural fibres like hemp cotton and bamboo cotton. Instead of disposing the diaper after single use, one can wash and reuse it.” Mano Sathya Selvaraj, who has her own brand of cloth diapers called Apple Blossoms, says that cloth diapers are not just easy on the environment, but on the baby and wallet as well. She says, “Bamboo cotton absorbs water easily. Our diapers come in two sizes — newborn and one size. We provide inserts with microfibre, hemp, charcoal bamboo and bamboo cotton. The diaper wet-free bags can be used to hold soiled and unused diapers.”
- Despite HC order, city corpn delays action against builder, says petitioner Nivedha Selvam | Dec 17, 2018, 00:26 IST
Coimbatore: Years after the Madras high court ordered the city corporation to take action against a building owner for violating norms in the construction of a four-storey building located at Balasubramanian Nagar in Peelamedu, the civic body has placed a board stating that action has been initiated.
“Based on the court order dated August 12, 2015, action was initiated by the Coimbatore corporation under the sections 56 and 57 of the Tamil Nadu Town and Country Planning Act, 1971 for the violations of building norms. Under the sections, the corporation can seal and lock the building,” the board says.
The petitioner in the case, meanwhile, blamed the civic body for the delay. “In the last two years, I would have visited the corporation office over 100 times requesting the officials to take action. Every time, they assured me of action, but nothing was done,” he told TOI. “The building’s compound wall should be 10feet away from the neighbouring house, but the builders had left only nine inches. From the day I realized that they were violating the norms, I had been filing petitions to various officers, seeking action.”
As the building has seven toilets constructed along the neighbouring houses that are only a few inches away, even a single crack in the pipelines would fill the neighbourhood with sewage, he said. “The corporation had given the builder approval for only 3,600sqft, but it has been built on a 6,000sqft land. Also, as per the approved plan, only two floors were approved. But the owner had constructed four floors.”
The builder had filed a petition in the Coimbatore civil court after the city corporation issued a seal and demolition order on February 19, 2016 and a few months ago, the court has disposed the case and directed the corporation to take the necessary action.
“Ideally, the corporation should have sealed and locked the building. But, they have only erected a board. And, it is not the only instance where the building violations are merely ignored. Sometimes, even when a complaint was registered when the building is under construction, the civic body takes its own time to take action and by that time, the construction of building is completed,” said S Kanagasundaram, a civic activist.
Most of the residential houses are constructed violating the norms and corporation takes no measures to correct them, he added.
Corporation officials said that they had to wait as a case was pending in the civil court.
- Farmers oppose land acquisition
COIMBATORE, DECEMBER 18, 2018 00:00 IST
UPDATED: DECEMBER 18, 2018 03:47 IST
Members of Tamil Nadu Farmers’ Association, affiliated to the CPI (M), on Monday petitioned the Coimbatore district administration registering their opposition to acquisition of land for road, power supply and other projects.
In their petition, submitted at the weekly grievance meeting on Monday, the farmers accused the Central and State governments of embarking on projects aimed at either lowering the value of farmers’ lands or acquiring them.
The lands to be acquired mostly belonged to medium, small and marginal farmers despite knowing fully well that land was farmers livelihood.
The lands of corporate companies or politicians were excluded from acquisition, they alleged and complained that the governments were aided and abetted by police officials.
This had forced farmers to live fearing that their lands could be the next one to be acquired.
This had caused consternation among farmers and forced them to be united in their struggle against land acquisition.
The farmers were pushed to such a disadvantageous position that they were not allowed to even protest and every time they wanted to register their protest, they were forced to knock on the doors of courts to obtain permission. The governments would do well to take underground the power lines and lay them along roads and spare the farmers of their lands, they said.
School collecting excess fee: parents
Association of parents of children studying in a private CBSE school in Nallampalayam on Monday petitioned the district administration demanding action against the institution for collecting fee in excess of what was prescribed.
The association alleged that the school management collected Rs. 10,000 in excess of the prescribed fee from parent of each student and in doing so, it violated even an order of the Madras High Court.
When parents’ question the school management, the latter threatened to issue transfer certificates to the students., it said and added that its representations to the School Education Department authorities did not yield any result.
‘Restore right to perform ritual in temple’
Kovaipudur resident Chatrapathi on Monday petitioned the district administration urging the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Department to restore his right to perform rituals at the Dharmaraja Droupadiamman Temple and cultivate the lands that was given to his family.
When the department took over the temple, it also took possession of the lands that was given to his family. This had led to loss of income and he was left without a job, the petitioner said and added that his rights be restored to him.
- Seal complex built after razing temple, HC tells officials The Madras high court on Wednesday directed the Tiruvannamalai revenue authorities to seal a multi-storeyed commercial complex that had been built after demolishing an ancient temple on the Girivalam route.
TNN | Dec 20, 2018, 10:02 IST
Picture used for representational purpose only
CHENNAI: The Madras high court on Wednesday directed the Tiruvannamalai revenue authorities to seal a multi-storeyed commercial complex that had been built after demolishing an ancient temple on the Girivalam route.
“Revenue officials and the district police shall immediately seal the commercial complex and report compliance by Friday,” a division bench of Justice R Mahadevan and Justice P D Audikesavalu said.
The issue pertains to a plea moved by C M Sivababu, president of Tamil Desiya Makkal Katchi and a resident of Tiruvanamalai, alleging that the Arulmigu Bhaktha Markandeya Temple had been completely razed by a group of private encroachers, who then built a commercial complex on the premises.
When the plea came up for hearing, Tiruvannamalai deputy superintendent of police and inspector of town police appeared before the court submitted that after filing the FIR in 2014 against 13 persons, they proceeded with the investigation and filed chargesheet in 2015. The main accused — Venkatesh and six others — were arrested. They were later released on bail, the officials said, adding that the other accused had obtained anticipatory bail.
Recording the submission, the bench asked the deputy superintendent of police whether it was true that a temple was demolished. As the DSP answered in the affirmative, the bench ordered authorities to seal the complex immediately.