NAMAKKAL: Four decades have passed, but 50 families living along the banks of the Cauvery river in Pallipalayam continue to wait for land to be allotted for them to relocate. The wait is set to get longer as revenue officials claim that a suitable parcel of land is not available in the district.
K Rajammal, a resident of Pallipalayam, said, "In the last 40 years, we have seen several floods and inundation of our houses. During such times, officials shift us to cramped shelters." Officials or politicians, along with mediapersons, would visit them and assure that they would be provided land free of cost and evacuated to safe places, she said. But the promise has yet to become a reality.
"Several petitions have been submitted to revenue officials in vain. In 2018, then Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami inspected the areas along the river bank and promised land, but nothing materialised," she lamented.
N Parvathi and R Vasantha, sexagenarians living along the banks, said youth in the locality could not realise their dream of higher education. Though there are many educational opportunities available, our children are not able to take them up due to financial problems, they said.
"A couple of years ago, the state government provided land free of cost to a few families alone. We too have been waiting for decades. Considering our livelihood, the state government should extend a helping hand so that at least the next generation leads a decent life," the women said.
Sources in the revenue department said the district administration had intensified precautionary measures in Pallipalayam and surrounding low-lying areas in view of the North East monsoon. "We still don't have any detailed project report for new constructions under the Tamil Nadu Slum Clearance Board for people residing along the banks of the Cauvery as there are no lands available. What can we do?" said an official.
Tiruchengode Revenue Divisional Officer (RDO) Ilavarasi said they had sent a few proposals to the state government in this regard and were awaiting a response. Collector Shreya P Singh was not available for comment.