Tirupur dying units ready to maintain prescribed TDS levels

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Coimbatore, Feb 3 (PTI) With the Tamil Nadu ElectricityBoard starting to snap power supply to the bleaching anddyeing units in nearby Tirupur, the knitwear exporters todaysaid they are ready to maintain the prescribed Total DissolvedSalt level in their units.

TNEB''s action follows the directive from Tamil NaduPollution Control Board, based on the Madras High Court orderon Jan 28 for closing all the 754 dyeing and bleaching unitsfor discharging effluents polluting the Noyyal river, on whosebanks Tirupur is located, and adversely affecting the farmers.

After an urgent meeting, a Joint Committee of allgarment associations in Tirupur announced that the dyeingunits were willing to maintain the TDS level of 2,100 partsper million in the effluents as prescribed by the TNPCB.

Claiming that there was no technology in the world thatwould be able to attain ''zero discharge'' of effluents, TirupurExporters Association president, A Shaktivel, said about Rs1,200 crore had been spent by the units in vain to achieve it.

He added a delegation would meet government officialstomorrow to inform them of the willingness of the units tomaintain the prescribed TDS level.

The closure of the units, some of whom have voluntarilyshut down following the court directive, has left the futureof more than 3 lakh workers in the balance.

Besides the 50,000 workers employed in the units that arebeing closed, the livelihood of another about 2.5 lakh workersin the knitwear industry in Tirupur is also under threat,AITUC sources said. Some of the workers, from the southerndistricts of Tamil Nadu or nearby Kerala, have already startedreturning to their native places, they said.

Unless an immediate solution was found, the future ofmost of these workers was "doomed", they said.

TNPCB sources said that since there were more than 500units whose electricity connection has to be disconnected,(nearly 250 have already been closed due to various reasons)the process would take at least another 24 to 36 hours.

The meeting of the garment associations also resolved torequest the State government to expedite the implementation ofthe Marine Discharge project, for which Rs 200 crore has beenallocated by the 13th Finance Commission, Shaktivel said. PTICOR ARP RA

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