Rampant encroachments on rivers show the lack of work by the river restoration trust.
What’s it about? The state government set up the Chennai River Restoration Trust (CRRT) nearly 2 decades ago. In recent years, it has removed more than 17,000 encroachments. Most of these were done during the AIADMK’s rule from 2017 to 2021, despite allegations of human rights violations. Of late, there seems to be no work being done.
- Last May, the drive to remove encroachments was halted at Kotturpuram after a man immolated himself in protest. 6,000 encroachments have yet to be removed.
- In Maduravoyal near the Cooum, the Corporation has built bund walls, which are uneven and without any boundary demarcations. Hence, land sharks are using the encroached area for parking.
Who said what? CRRT member secretary S Swarna said due to several ongoing court cases, removing encroachments has been difficult. Raj Bhagat Palanichamy, a GIS expert, said there needs to be a digital map to make it easier to identify encroachments.