Joda: Suna river is said to be the lifeline for people of Joda town in Keonjhar district, but its water has been polluted due to the digging of pits for slurry pipeline of an industrial unit, a report said. Its bed has been dug up with machines, leaving to blockage of its water flow. According to the report, a slurry pipeline of an industry is being laid through Joda town. The pipeline will transport iron fines mixed with water to a distant steel industry. The company is digging pits along the roads from Joda upto Kalimati via Bamebari.
Due to this, electricity transmission and water supply in the town have been disrupted. Internet service is being affected too. Even worse, half-filed pits and open pits at many places are accumulating rainwater, causing inconvenience to locals. Machines were engaged and pits were dug up in the river bed Monday. The digging has polluted the water as a result of which lakhs of people depending on it are now facing problems. “After digging of pits in the river, water flow has been affected. Its water has become unfit for use and consumption,” rued locals like Fasan Ali, Gourang Behera and Sumant Giri. They feared that if the slurry pipeline cracks in future, it will completely contaminate the water and people will suffer.
The Joda municipality authorities have somehow failed to pay attention to this hazard. Manas Das, a local intellectual, said that the riverbed digging should be avoided in the monsoon in view of possible contamination. The slurry pipeline, passing through the town and human settlements, will pose a threat to people if and when it bursts and spills out wet minerals.
On the other hand, mineral transport through slurry pipeline would severely affect transportation through trucks and lakhs of transporters will be affected, Das added. Sushant Kumar Barik, secretary of Joda Truck Owners’ Association, said that the association has been opposing the slurry pipeline. The pipeline passing through rivers, creeks and drains will create a lot of mess in days to come, he added.