Public Ire over Pvt Co Work Site at Chitrapuzha

The residents have raised protest against a Pune-based company alleging environmental pollution

Published: 17th February 2014 09:53 AM  |   Last Updated: 17th February 2014 09:53 AM   |  A+A-


The residents of Tripunithura are up in arms against the Pune-based Fab Tech Projects and Engineering that has set up work site at Chitrapuzha here.According to sources with the Tripunithura Municipality, the private company has procured one-and-a-half acres of partially-filled paddy field   on lease for conducting the fabrication works worth `400 crore.

It is learnt that the company has entered into a contract with the Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited (BPCL) for carrying out fabrication works for the Integrated Kochi Refinery Expansion Project.

However, according to NILA Residents Association members, the work is  affecting the normal life of people.

“We have conducted a detailed discussion with the company officials and learnt that the company carries   out welding, cutting and grinding of the 80-mm thick metal plates.   Radiography and blasting have to be carried out for the project. These works  cause sound pollution and radiography is harmful for human health. The company has already started the work before getting sanction from the Pollution Control Board and the respective local body,” said M S Nair, president, residents association.

Nair added that the fabrication work will pollute Thaneerchal River. “The work site has been set up near the Thaneerchal River. More than 100 employees work round the clock at the site. However, the company had not arranged any sanitation facilities for them. The people here depend on the river for drinking water project and the lack of sanitation facilities will pollute the river,” he added.

The association members said they will organise protest measures if the  authorities failed to stop the illegal work of the company.

Farook Sait, senior environmental engineer, Kerala State Pollution Control Board (PCB), said the company has started fabrication work without acquiring sanction from the Board.

“They had applied for sanction to conduct welding works. However, it came to our  notice that they have made arrangements to conduct radiography and blasting as well. We will not grant permission for any work that creates environmental pollution,” he said.

Sources with Tripunithura Municipality said the local body will not give sanction for the work if they failed to get PCB nod.

Meanwhile, Harish Sharma, deputy general manager (HR), Fab Tech Projects and Engineering Limited told ‘City Express’ that their project will not cause any harm to the residents or environment.

“The allegations levelled against us are baseless. We are only conducting welding works. Works likes radiography and blasting will be conducted at other sites. There is no possibility for water pollution. We have only 30-35 workers for the project and have arranged sanitation facilities for them,” the official said.

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