Sabarimala pilgrimage: TDB to install sewage treatment plants at  Nilakkal, Pampa

Though TDB wants to install the plants ahead of the start of the pilgrimage season, it is highly unlikely that the Board will be able to meet the deadline. 

Published: 08th July 2019 04:39 AM  |   Last Updated: 08th July 2019 04:39 AM   |  A+A-


Pilgrims offering prayers near the Pampa river before proceeding to Sabarimala Lord Ayyappa temple on Thursday (File Photo | EPS, Shaji Vettipuram)

Express News Service

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Travancore Devaswom Board (TDB) has decided to set up sewage treatment plants at Nilakkal and Pampa to complement the one already functioning at Sannidhanam. The Board also plans to erect bio-fencing along the way to Sabarimala temple to ward off wild animals.
Though the Board has shortlisted two companies - one from Chennai and another from Pune - to set up the sewage treatment plants, officials are not satisfied with their technical know-how. 

“The sewage treatment plant at Sannidhanam is not functioning at a satisfactory level. We don’t want that to happen for the new treatment plants at Pampa and Nilakkal. We want to rule out all technical glitches. So we have decided to got for further discussions,” said a TDB officer privy to the process. Though TDB wants to install the plants ahead of the start of the pilgrimage season, it is highly unlikely that the Board will be able to meet the deadline. 

“We want the treatment plants to be fool-proof. We can’t afford any flaws in the system which will lead to chaos. At present, we have a system in place and we will complete the project before the term of this government ends,” said TBD member K P Sankaradas.
The Board is also in discussions for bio-fencing the route from Pampa to Sannidhanam to ward off wild animals including elephants, boars and Bears.

The Board has received expert opinion that bio-fencing will be the most effective and environmentally suitable method to repel animal attack. However, TDB has to work out the intricacies of bio-fencing with the Forest department, officials said. 

“We are seriously contemplating bio-fencing the areas around Sannidhanam and from Pampa onwards and other areas where there are possibilities of animal attacks,” said Sankaradas. “Board president A Padmkumar and I had recently found an excellent bio-fencing model in Mysore which uses palm trees for fencing. We have initiated discussions with the Forest department regarding the same. This project may not be finalised this season,” he said.


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