CHERUTHONI: It is less than 10 months since the devastating flood swept away the farmlands and houses on the banks of the Periyar. While the Geology Department and the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) had recommended that no construction that disrupts the flow of the river should be allowed on the riverbed, a bund road being constructed by the PWD across the river has invited criticism.
Three bund roads were constructed across the river to facilitate local people to reach the villages located across the river. But the flood water released from the Idukki dam swept away all constructions on its course. Meanwhile, the PWD is constructing a bund road providing three culverts for the water to flow on the river bed.
“This shows we haven’t learnt a lesson from the flood. No construction blocking the flow of the river should be allowed on the river bed. They should have built a bridge instead. The construction of the bund can lead to the destruction of the farmlands on both banks,” said environmentalist C M Joy.
“No construction should be allowed without studying the navigation of the river. Though there is not much flow in the river after the construction of the dam, there can be unusual situations like last year’s flood. The culverts will not be enough to ensure free flow of water,” said Periyar Samrakshana Vedi chairman S Seetharaman.
Idukki District Collector H Dineshan said he didn’t receive any complaint regarding the construction of the bund road. “I will look into the issue and ensure that no violation is done,” he said.