Pallikaranai Anai Eri is being developed in an area of about 50 acres, and about 60% of the work has been completed so far
Several water bodies have come to life following the copious rains in the city’s southern suburbs due to Cyclone Nivar.
Pallikaranai Anai Eri is one such lake. It is being developed in an area of about 50 acres, with three island parks inside, at a cost of ₹1,100 lakh. Ahead of the cyclone, about 60% of the work was completed, and it is already serving its purpose as rainwater has filled it.
During a visit last week, Greater Chennai Corporation (GCC) Commissioner G. Prakash asked officials to strengthen the embankments of this lake with strong boulders, to lay favor blocks on the roads formed, and to test the water inflow for any micro-organisms and to complete the works before January 2021. He was accompanied by A. Senthil Kumar, Project Officer, District Rural Development Agency, Chengleput District, Thirunavukkarasu and Purusothaman, executive engineers of GCC, and Rajavelu, executive engineer, Water Resources Department, Chengleput district.
Mr. Prakash advised the officials to plant native trees along the periphery of the lake, with beautification of islands inside, by getting technical inputs from S. Raja Mohamed, a retired joint director of the Horticulture Department, and a resident of the area.
A view of the Pallikaranai Anai Eri before restoration.
The objective is to restore the waterbody to recharge the ground water for nearby dwelling places, build ex-situ conservation of native tree species of the region, develop unique green cover with aesthetic and therapeutic appeal, reduce the impact of air, noise pollution and dust and reduce the soil erosion at the embankment slopes, said Mr. Raja Mohamed.
Near the lake, a unique ‘Mountainous Miyawaki Forest’ is being developed on the OSR land belonging to Medavakkam panchayat. This forest will have plants of native habits, bird-attracting fruit trees like jamun, cherry, kodukkaipuli and plants with medicinal importance like amla and fig and other avenue forest trees with life fencing, on the periphery.
Work for formation of RWHS (Rain Water Harvesting Structure) channels connecting to the existing drainage channels is being executed under MGNREGA. Silt, rich in organic nutrients, excavated from the nearby Anai Eri has been dumped on this site to make the mountainous structures healthy with undulations, Mr. Raja Mohamed said.
Mr. Prakash visited this site as well and provided inputs, asking the officials to expedite the work.