KOCHI: Resident associations, clubs and students should join hands with government departments as steps are set to be initiated to rejuvenate Konoth river, according to District Collector Mohammed Y Safirulla.
The Collector said the river can be restored only through public participation. A meeting held on Monday to evaluate the programme to rejuvenate the river was attended by Irrigation, Local Self Government and Revenue Department officers.
Anoop Jacob MLA who attended the meeting said an awareness programme should be conducted for restoring the river. The proper flow of water should be ensured by evicting encroachers. People and organisations dumping waste in the river should be identified and action should be initiated against them.
A decision has been taken to clean 17 km stretch of the river from Puthenkavu to Vettukadavu. Due to waste dumping, the river’s flow has been affected. The water from the river cannot be used for agriculture purpose. Residents on the banks of the river complained about various health issues and claim the number of cancer patients among them is increasing.
The chemical content in the water is also allegedly high. Earlier, 3,500 acres adjacent to the river was cultivated annually; the cultivation has dwindled to 877 acres now.
The Irrigation Department presented a report about rejuvenating the river during the meeting. Another report about the current situation of the river was presented by the Tripunithura Municipality.