Illegal brick kilns: Is Coimbatore's Kovanur the next Thadagam Valley?

Residents of Kovanur have complained that a large number of illegal brick kilns have been set up in the village and requested the district administration to take action against the units.

Published: 11th February 2022 12:51 PM  |   Last Updated: 11th February 2022 12:51 PM   |  A+A-

Kovanur, brick kilns

Kovanur is situated around 20 km from Thadagam valley. The villagers suspect that mushrooming of brick kilns could be a consequence of the HC order.

By Express News Service

Residents of Kovanur have complained that a large number of illegal brick kilns have been set up in the village and requested the district administration to take action against the units. It may be recalled that Madras High Court last year ordered the closure of 186 brick kilns functioning in Thadagam Valley for violating norms.

Kovanur is situated around 20 km from Thadagam valley. The villagers suspect that mushrooming of brick kilns could be a consequence of the HC order.

The number of illegal brick kiln units in Kovanur  increased from 6 to 32 in four months, they claimed.
"Following the Madras High Court's intervention, operators are now focussing on Kovanur, situated near Naickenpalayam in Coimbatore North Taluk. The Kovanur valley, which comes under Hill Area Conservation Authority (HACA), is getting degraded environmentally with increasing brick kiln units," P Saridha, who submitted a petition with district administration.

"All units operating in the village are unauthorised and operators have started excavating red sand for brick kiln production," she said, adding that if the district administration does not take action against them, Kovanur will become another Thadagam Valley. She alleged the units disrupted the water channels flowing into the Kousika river in the valley.

D Vijaya Ganapathi, a resident of Naickenpalayam, said, "As there are not many water resources for the area, operators, who are mostly farmers who had once owned lands, dig out farmlands for red sand."
When contacted, S Ramesh Kumar, Assistant Director of Geology and Mines Department said, "Based on the complaints, a team of revenue and mines department officials inspected the area on Wednesday when we found brick units started without permission. We have taken steps to close them down. A notice will be issued soon to units."



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