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Panel Opposes Direct Chemical Treatment  
Source:   The Hindu City   : Pampa Published On   21-12-2009  


An eight-member people’s fact-finding committee, on Sunday, expressed reservations about the direct chemical treatment of the water in the Njunangar stream, a tributary of the Pampa originating from the Sannidhanam, using “contaminated ferrous chloride, waste product of a private company.”

The committee visited the stream, Pampa Triveni and the sewage treatment plant of the Travancore Devaswom Board on the banks of the river at Cheriyanavattom.

R. Ajayan, environmentalist and convener of the committee, told presspersons that the experts on the panel were of the opinion that the direct chemical treatment was unscientific, leaving the 30-lakh population in the Pampa river basin up to Kuttanad exposed to alarming health risks from contamination of the water source with heavy metals such as cadmium, nickel, chromium and zinc.

The committee made the visit following reports on possible heavy metal contamination of the Pampa from the direct chemical treatment.

Mr. Ajayan said the technical experts on the committee collected samples of water and sludge from the stream and the Pampa for detailed tests at a nationally accredited laboratory.

The committee expressed deep concern over the alleged failure on the part of the Kerala State Pollution Control Board to conduct any environment impact study.

Mr. Ajayan said the committee would submit a report on its preliminary findings to the Kerala government soon.

It called upon the government to ban the use of contaminated ferrous chloride so that people would not be put to any further health risks.

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