The Government of India’s Fisheries Department has called for tenders to undertake dredging and desilting of the Pulicat Lake estuary in Tamil Nadu state, South India.
This is a temporary solution to remove tonnes of silt that is blocking the movement of seawater into and out of the brackish water lake in Tiruvallur district, The Hindu reports.
Fishermen from villages including Annamalaicheri, Korakuppam, Pasiyavaram, Thoniravu, Madhakuppam, Andikuppam and Kottakuppam depend on the lake for their livelihood.
“This is for temporarily opening the bar mouth using a dredger. For a permanent solution to the frequent closure of the mouth, we have approached the State Level Environment Impact Assessment Authority for necessary clearance. This follows a direction from the Environment Ministry,” the department said in its announcement.
“Meanwhile, the Public Works Department is also mandated to take up continuous maintenance dredging as a flood mitigation strategy.”
Fishermen, who have been removing silt with the help of an earthmover with their own funds, are demanding that a permanent solution be implemented as fast as possible before the lake dies a natural death due to silt accumulation, according to The Hindu.