The Madras High Court has banned any form of construction on water bodies in Tamil Nadu for the next one month. Following the TN floods, several experts have expressed the opinion that the nature of water-logging in several parts of the state were severe because water-bodies were encroached upon for construction.
“We order that there shall not be any permission to make any construction in any manner, on the water-bodies anywhere in the entire state of Tamil Nadu till January 18, 2016” said the judges, according to TOI.
An interim order was passed after a PIL was filed by the president K Shanmugasundram of a canal conservation forum in Erode Iyarkai Valam Matrum Perumbulla Odai Padukappu Nala Sangam.
The petitioner’s main aim was to try and stop encroachment of minor irrigation canal. Earlier, the bench had asked the authorities to conduct an inspection and submit a report when the case came for hearing on November 16. But on Wednesday, the forum’s counsel brought to the notice of the court that the Government was planning to build a road on the water body, the judges passed an interim stating no permission for any construction on any water-body.
K Shanmugasundram said that he had filed another petition in 2009 and the court had asked the Tehsildar to remove all the obstruction in the minor streams to allow free flow of water as it is the only source of irrigations for agriculture. The tehsildar had not taken any actions to remove the obstructions. He also blamed the revenue inspector of Erode and village administrative office of Kathirampatti village for allowing dumping of waste soil on waterbody. The Erode collector and public works department authorities also did not take any initiatives to stop the obstructions.