Chennai Buzz: ECR residents stage road roko | E-Coli in drinking water…and more!

In this weekly recap, catch why Injambakkam residents staged a road roko, when the Buckingham canal beautification shall be completed, and more.

Mega sports city to come up on East Coast Road

A mega sports city spanning 500 acres is slated to come up on the outskirts of Chennai, along East Coast Road near Thiruvidanthai. The site encompasses 9 villages and will be located on either side of the Buckingham Canal. 

The sports city will have facilities such as athletic tracks, indoor cycling velodrome, a hockey stadium, a multipurpose indoor stadium housing a boxing ring, basketball and volleyball courts. Tamil Nadu Sports Minister stated that the project has been planned after observing the construction of Pune’s Shree Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex and Patiala’s Netaji Subhas National Institute of Sports. The aim is to create a center for training younger children to help them become sports stars in the future. 

The Tamil Nadu Industrial Development Corporation (TIDCO) has floated tenders to bring in consultants to prepare a report regarding the techno-economic feasibility of the project. The report will list the investments required from government and private sectors for the project. 

Source: The Times of India 

Read more: These six industries in North Chennai are polluting the air for more than half the year

Photo-exhibition on Reframing North Chennai

Six young photographers who have undergone a workshop in photography sponsored by Chennai Climate Action Group (CCAG), will be showcasing their work in North Chennai in an exhibition on February 3rd and 4th. The title of the exhibition is ‘Reframed,’ as it aims to move away from stereotypical narratives around North Chennai, popularised by films and popular culture where it is often depicted as unsafe or polluted. 

The young photographers are from neighbourhoods in North Chennai, and will be showcasing a total of 50 photographs which will depict stories and themes around work, mourning, joy and play in the area. The photographers are aged between 14 to 22 years and were trained by People’s Archive of Rural India (PARI) photographer Palanikumar. 

The showcase will take place in the Folly, Amethyst in Royapettah between 10 am and 6 pm.

Source: The News Minute

E. coli in drinking water in Teynampet and Royapuram: GCC Health Department study

The GCC’s health department  has released a study on drinking water samples from public fountains, public water tanks, and lorries. The study revealed that E.coli was found in drinking water in Teynampet and Royapuram. In total 17 locations were identified to have E.coli in the water.

Of these, 12 were in Royapuram, Tondiarpet and the rest were in Teynampet. In addition to this, 12 other locations in Tondiarpet did not have chlorine residue as is mandated by the health department. 

water tanker
Drinking water contamination was detected in a health department study. Pic: Laasya Shekhar

According to the Additional City Health Officer, S. Mahalakshmi, this type of contamination is higher after flooding and in areas where the pipelines are older. While the corporation does lift samples randomly, they do carry out a check when they start getting a lot of complaints for diarrhoea cases among residents.  According to a metro water official, a zone wise comprehensive distribution of water will be done in areas where the pipelines are 30-50 years old as a safety measure. 

Source: The Times of India

ECR Residents carry out road roko protesting evictions

500 residents from Bethel Nagar, Injambakkam conducted a flash road roko on Thursday evening along ECR, protesting the HC order to carry out evictions in the area. The order was based on allegations that the residents were encroaching on a marshland. 

The eviction drive began on Thursday morning, when the revenue department started razing the compound walls of empty plots with demolition machines, even putting up boards warning of evictions for around 100 plots. In addition, the department cut the power supply for commercial establishments in the area. The evictions could potentially affect around 5000 people in the process. 

During the roko and protests that have been carried out over the past week, residents questioned why authorities failed to act two decades ago, that is at the time of registration, as opposed to now when residents are well settled into their livelihoods and homes. A few residents were even detained during yesterday’s protest. The leaders of the protests are planning to move the HC regarding the matter.

Source: The Times of India | The New Indian Express

Read more: Buckingham Canal beautification: Will it solve the real problems?

Buckingham Canal beautification to be completed in the next month

The beautification project was announced in June 2021, and was projected to be completed in 6 months time. It has been delayed due to the COVID-19 situation over the past few months. 

The project is being carried out below the elevated track of the Mass Rapid Transport System (MRTS), from Kasturibai station to Thiruvanmiyur. It aims to completely redo the stretch along the Buckingham Canal (previously a site for dumping debris) so as to attract more visitors. It is currently being carried out in two phases by two contractors, costing a total of 20 crores. It is being funded by the Tamil Nadu Urban Road Infrastructure Project (TURIP).

The project involves setting up of a Miyawaki forest, brighter streetlights, a cycle lane, skating area, wall paintings, a paved footpath and much more. It is expected to be completed by February and will be open to the public in March. 

Source: The Hindu

[Compiled by Savitha Ganesh]

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