CHENNAI: In the wake of recent flooding episodes, the Tamil Nadu government has announced a new project at a cost of Rs 816.80 crore to restore the Pallikaranai marshland and waterways feeding in and out of the waterbody.
Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam in the state budget on Tuesday announced that the project would be undertaken jointly by the Public Works Department, Chennai Corporation and Highways Department.
“The government is fully committed to protect the Pallikaranai marshland, which is one of the recognized wetlands in Tamil Nadu and plays a major role in absorbing floodwaters and recharging groundwater,” Pannerselvam said.
He said that funding from the National Adaptation Fund for Climate Change was anticipated for the project, while a conservation authority for the Pallikaranai marshland has been constituted and restoration activities are being implemented at a total cost of Rs 165.68 crores, he said.
Chennai Corporation officials said that the project would cover desilting waterways and constructing new ones in areas which lead to Pallikaranai.
The officials said storm water drains (SWDs) along the radial road would be cleaned by the highways department while the civic body would build newer cut-and-cover SWDs between the stretch at areas vulnerable to water stagnation.
Civic body officials did not comment on a deadline for this project, since it requires coordination from many departments. “The project will be undertaken in phases while the biomining also will be done to restore the Pallikaranai marshland,” said an official.