Olive beach bungalows to be razed on September 26, TN government takes note of fresh violations

After TNIE report, officials visit construction site and issue notices

Published: 25th September 2020 06:12 AM  |   Last Updated: 25th September 2020 11:32 AM   |  A+A-

A file photo of buildings constructed close to seashore in Muttukadu, near Chennai | SHIBA PRASAD SAHU

Express News Service

CHENNAI: The plush bungalows built in the unauthorized Olive beach layout in Muttukadu are likely to be demolished on Saturday.

Official sources told Express that notices were issued to five bungalow owners to pull down the structures by themselves before Saturday failing which the authorities will execute the demolition.

Last month, Madras High Court has directed Member Secretary (Incharge), Mamallapuram Local Planning Authority, Chengalpattu, in coordination with the Tamil Nadu Coastal Zone Management Authority, represented by its Member Secretary, along with the Collector of Chengalpattu to carry out the demolition of the super structures, as expeditiously as possible and also remove the boulders that were put-up by owners to protect the property from sea erosion. The Superintendents of Police, Chengalpattu and Kancheepuram districts were directed to accord necessary police protection for carrying out the work.

On Thursday, following Express expose, Department of Environment officials visited Muttukadu, where fresh constructions are coming-up in survey number 107 and 108 in violation of Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) Notification, 2011. These structures were coming-up within 10 metres from the High Tide Line (HTL) of sea.

As per CRZ Notification, 2011 area up to 200 metres from HTL on the landward side in case of seafront is to be earmarked as "No Development Zone" and no construction shall be permitted except for repairs and reconstruction of existing authorised structures like dwelling units of traditional coastal communities.

KV Giridhar, Director of Department of Environment and member secretary of Tamil Nadu State Coastal Zone Management Authority (TNSCZMA), confirmed to The New Indian Express, "The area was inspected and noticed violation. Appropriate action will be taken."

Meanwhile, a comprehensive study to assess the impact of hotels, beach resorts, amusement parks and other recreational activities on the coast is underway. Tamil Nadu State Coastal Zone Management Authority has accorded to city-based NGO Care Earth.

"The study will focus on the impact of hotels, beach resorts and other recreational activities including tourism on coastal and marine ecosystems between Chennai and Mamallapuram in order to strengthen the monitoring system, developing proper mitigation measures and policy decisions based on the carrying capacity of the coast. This study is for a year and the project will be executed by the State Coastal Zone Development Fund," officials said.

As per the ToR, the consultant has been mandated to review the land records and secondary literature. High-resolution geospatial analysis of time series change in land use, land cover, infrastructure, the density of population, etc will be looked into, besides on-site assessment of both individual and cumulative impact. "Before the lockdown, there has been some delay in carrying out the study since resorts were all closed, but now the work has resumed," authorities said.


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