Thiruvananthapuram, April 16: What happened when at least 10,000 people from various walks of life came together in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala last week? Together they clean Killi river. The river that gently flows through various parts of the state has long been struggling because of the huge amount of waste, debris and plastics thrown on to it.
State tourism minister Kadakampally Surendran flagged off the clean-up drive at Vazhayila in Thiruvananthapuram district on Saturday, reported The Hindu. He told the participants in the clean-up drive under "Killiyar Mission" that the project for reviving the Killi river had become a model for others to follow.
"Kerala: A day-long cleaning campaign was held yesterday to clean up 22 km stretch of Killi River in Thiruvananthapuram as a part of 'Killiyar Mission'. Locals and workers & representatives of various organisations participated in the mass cleaning drive," tweeted ANI.
Kerala: A day-long cleaning campaign was held yesterday to clean up 22 km stretch of Killi River in Thiruvananthapuram as a part of ‘Killiyar Mission’. Locals and workers & representatives of various organisations participated in the mass cleaning drive. pic.twitter.com/rZFY55MPJP— ANI (@ANI) April 14, 2018
The idea behind cleaning the river is to prepare it for the monsoon to avoid any deluge. Along with cleaning, the citizens will also build check-dams during April and May before the onset of the monsoon. The river is also facing a lot of encroachments which also necessitated its cleaning drive, stated an official supervising the citizen-driven clean-up initiative.
Earlier in April, at least 1,500 people participated in "Puzhayarivu", an awareness walk conducted to conserve Killi river. "Puzhayarivu" consisted of two river-side walks that started from the two ends of the river to meet at a common point, stated a report by The New Indian Express. During the event, senior ministers of the Kerala government took part to save and clean the river.
"It's a unique endeavour to clean the river where ministers, government officials and citizens are taking part in an enthusiastic manner. Rivers are our life. Thanks to large-scale urbanisation they are fast becoming polluted and dump yards. We need to save them for our future and the people of Kerala are showing it to the world by cleaning Killi river," said a local activist.