Uppanar Pollution: Second Illegal discharge from Pioneer Jellice reported in a fortnight

Cuddalore, 2 February 2012: Panchayat ward member of Songolikuppam village, Thiru Velachamy reported an illegal discharge of effluent from Pioneer Jellice unit into river Uppanar today at about 7.30 am. In the morning while going to the river, Velachamy noticed white colour foam on the top of the River Uppanar towards the northern side of Pioneer. Upon inspection he found out that white colour water along with foam was being discharged through a “vaikal” (canal) located near the northern boundary of the unit into the river. This canal normally drains rainwater from Semmankuppam village into the river. Curious to find the source of this effluent, Velchamy followed the canal and found out a small hole in the boundary of Pioneer from where the effluent was being drained out in to the canal and subsequently into the river. He immediately alerted SACEM monitors who rushed to the spot for documentation of the discharge. A very strong rotten dead body odour was also reported from the effluent.

The ward member and SACEM members called the TNPCB District Environment Engineer (DEE) and Assistant Environment Engineer (AEE) from the spot to demand immediate action on the unit. DEE informed them about his inability to visit the spot since he was in Villipuram, another district, but he promised that he would send the AEE to look into the matter. According to SACEM the AEE has taken water samples from the river and the canal within hours of the release.

Pioneer Jellice is notorious for illegally discharging effluents into the river Uppanar and this incident is second incident of illegal discharge by the unit in last fortnight. Several such incidents have been reported from the unit in the last few years to the TNPCB. Repeat of such incidents also indicates the failure of the TNPCB in effectively regulating the units in SIPCOT area.

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