Mayor highlights PCB's failure in controlling Phalguni river pollution

Mayor Kavitha Sanil and the officials of Mangaluru City Corporation (MCC) clearly denied the allegation that Phalguni river has been contaminated by the sewage leaked from the treatment plants operated by the MCC.

During the spot visits, the wet wells and the sewage treatment plant were visited and the nearby water channels joining to the river were inspected on Sunday.

A series of visits were conducted by the mayor along with Town Planning Standing Committee President Abdul Rauf, MCC commissioner Mohammed Nazeer, Karnataka State Pollution Control Board district officer Rajshekhar Puranik, authorities of MCC and the media personnel. Konguru wet well, Sewage Treatment Plant at Pacchanadi, the confluence point of storm water channel and Phalguni river at Manjalpade and Malavoor dam were visited on the occasion.

MCC executive engineer said that pumping of sewage is being done during the peak hours at the drainage wetwell 9B-1 in Kongur, on day-to-day basis. It is the same case with wetwell-9 at Pacchanadi, the engineer said. The sewage treatment plant at Pacchanadi has 6.75 MLD capacity. The sewage does not join the river.

Puranik said there are possibilities of overflowing sewage from the treatment plants getting stagnant for a long time in the backwaters and causing the pollution. During the primary laboratory tests, the dissolved oxygen (DO) content was almost zero, which caused the death of aquatic creatures. The oxygen levels came down due high content of organic waste. Also, the Coliform bacteria content was 28.

The waste includes non-treated waste from KMF, Kulshekhar, which comes through the UGD.  The final lab reports from the Pollution Control Board (PCB), NITK and Fisheries College will arrive only after three days, he said.

Puranik further stated the PCB has sprayed 1 KL Hydrogen Peroxide on the polluted water on Saturday, to degrade the pollutant and to revive the dissolved oxygen levels.

It can be recalled that the contamination had killed aquatic creatures and cattle in the region which had consumed the water.

The mayor lambasted the PCB officer for accompanying a team of officials from the industries to Konguru wet well. “In what capacity the industry representatives visited the plant without the permission of MCC?”, she wanted to know.

Kavita condemned the act of the officer in strong words and said he was hand in glove with the industries who have been responsible for water contamination. The inefficiency of the PCB in preventing the water contamination was clearly visible. The effluent is let out by the industries during the wee hours between 3 and 4 am, she said.

Standing committee president Adbul Rauf urged for a third party inquiry into the case.” We are ready to face any investigation. Let the truth come out”, he said.
MCC executive engineer Maralahalli was present.

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