MADURAI: Recording the witness of a Sri Lankan Tamil, settled in Germany, who voluntarily appeared in Court explaining the pathetic condition of Courtallam falls, the Madurai Bench of Madras High Court asked the police not to allow the drunken to bath in the falls.
A bench, comprising Justices N Kirubakaran and S Vaidyanathan, while hearing a petition filed by one R Krishnasamy seeking a proper amenities at the falls in Courtallam, Ponambalam Karunanidhi, a German - Sri Lankan Tamil citizen, appeared in the court and stated that he had visited many places in India as a tourist.
Karunanidhi stated that he has been residing abroad for the past 30 years and through newspapers he learnt about the case and wanted to share his experience after visiting the falls at Courtallam in Tirunelveli district.
After verifying his passport, the judges allowed him to share his experience and the tourist, Ponambalam Karunanidhi, submitted that the roads were in a bad condition and shops and lodges were not properly maintained.
Further there were broker nuisance, all around the tourist spot. He also said that there were no proper road maps or direction boards indicating the routes to the tourists or foreign visitors and the public toilets and bathrooms were in a poor state. The place in and around the falls were rendered unhygienic due to littering by tourists and the general public.
Alleging that many persons, who come to take bath in the falls, consume alcohol and create nuisance, he said that there were no permit rooms and most of the people consume liquor in open space and on roads.
He also added that the lack of basic amenities and poor security arrangement, pose threat to tourists to the falls.
Hearing his account, the judges recorded his statement and asked him to file it as an affidavit.
Further the petitioner counsel Veerakathiravan also argued that most of the problem and accidents that occur in Courtallam falls involved tipplers or they were caused by those who were under the influence of alcohol.
Tirunelveli Superintendent of Police (SP) Narendran Nair and Tenkasi Additional SP Aravindan, who appeared in the court, submitted that though the sanctioned police strength to Courtallam is 80, only 35 were posted. They also stated that during the season time, additional force were deployed.
Recording the police version, the judges opined that the visitors may be allowed to take bath in the falls after being subjected to a Breathalyzer test and not to allow the drunken persons to the falls. They adjourned the case to June first week.