VELLORE: The Vellore corporation has launched an eviction drive, to make the drainage system in and around the Katpadi Road, free of encroachments.
The 750-metre stretch between the Beri Subramaniya Swami Koil Street opposite to the CMC Hospital and the Old National Theatre area along the Katpadi Road will be taken up for eviction in the first phase.
Recently, a 14-year old girl from Jharkhand had fallen into the drainage near the BS Swami Koil Street a few days back and her body was traced in Nicholson canal near the Collectorate after 60-hour marathon search operations. Following the mishap, the corporation has launched the cleaning operations of drainages in the city.
As the 8-metre-wide drainage passes stretches through a small distance inside the CMC Hospital campus, officials attached to the revenue department and corporation were seen removing concrete slabs that were used to close the drainage system with the help of earthmovers on Tuesday.
Collector R Nanthagopal also inspected the operations. The corporation officials claimed that as per the old map of the city, the hospital had encroached the drainage,which was a rivulet long back.
CMC Hospital sources said, the hospital had been allowed by the Department of Public Health in the year 1970, to close the open drainage then, near the hospital premises as it would be source of infection for diseases. Accordingly, the drainage was closed.
The hospital had also been de-silting the drainage regularly and keeping it clean, the sources added.
Similarly, the drainage along the compound wall of the hospital, near the entrance on the Arcot Road was also closed by the hospital two years back, by spending around `50 lakh, so that the drainage did not emerge as a breeding ground for infection,
While it is not known whether the drainage, which has been now opened by the corporation inside the CMC campus on the Katpadi Road would be left uncovered or closed.
The hospital is keeping its fingers crossed on how to tackle the issue of open drainage near its premises, that could very well turn out to be a public health issue.