CHENNAI: The Madras High Court on Saturday restrained the TN government from quarrying soil, ‘savudu and vandal’ from Puzhal lake until further orders.A bench of Justices N Kirubakaran and S Bhasakaran gave the directive, when a PIL petition came up. The PIL prayed for a directive to the authorities to assess the environmental impact arising out of the illegal quarrying and to take steps to restore the conditions in Puzhal lake. The bench directed Redhills inspector to provide protection to the petitioner.
The petitioner said in the guise of removing sludge, the authorities had allowed illegal lifting of huge quantity of ‘savudu and vandal’ from the lake, the main source of drinking water for the city, that too during rainy season. Petitioner alleged that by using 5 HP motors numbering about 35, water is pumped out to enable quarrying operations in the north western part of the lake.
Permission had also been granted to sand mafias to quarry savudu, soil and vandal from the neighbouring Kannigaiperu lake, which provides water for agricultural operations and the live-stock in the locality. When the petition came up for hearing the bench asked the government pleader to produce the copy of the letters granting permission on August 16.