Coliform bacteria count drops in Pampa, tributaries

P Suresh Babu /Sabarimala

Pampa: The Kerala State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) has reported a tremendous fall in the count of coliform bacteria in Pampa river and its tributaries. In 2017, 18,000 bacteria was found in 100 ml of water. But now it has come down to 600.

“According to the November 23 report, presence of coliform bacteria was marked as 40, 440, 680, 580, 540 and 600 in Kochu Pampa, Kakki, Triveni, Aarattu kadavu, Pampa and Njunagar respectively,” said KSPCB engineer Alexander George.

He pointed out that the presence of bacteria was not found in the water which drained out from the water treatment plant in Sannidhanam. The maximum permissible limit of coliform count is 230 in the water drained out of the water treatment plant. Meanwhile, maximum permissible limit of the bacteria in rivers is 5000.

In previous seasons, count of coliform bacteria was marked between 5000 and 50,000.

Though waste water treatment plant in Sannidhanam function properly, water purification using ozone is not carried out for three years. At present, the water is purified using chlorine.

The water treatment plant has the capacity to purify 50 lakh litres of water and was constructed here by spending Rs 23 crore.

The plant was not functioning properly since two years. In 2018, tender to administer the plant was given to Ernakulam-based firm Green Method Engineering. At present, 10.6 lakh litre waste water is treated in the plant.

In most of the buildings, sewage pipes are not connected to the plant. Hence, waste water is drained out to canals directly.

The pollution control board also noted that fall in number of pilgrims and shifting of base camp to Nilakkal reduced pollution of rivers. It is reported that the accumulation of human excreta in rivers also reduced due to this change.

As pilgrims are not allowed to camp in the shrine, there is limited chance for pollution of rivers, noted pollution control board.

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