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Massive breach in Big Tank plugged

Staff Reporter

Collective efforts of officials and villagers pay off



TEAM WORK: Work under way to plug the breach in the Ramanathapuram Big Tank on Wednesday.

Ramanathapuram: The commitment of Public Works Department (Water Resource Division), Revenue Department, private mill workers and villagers, who plugged a massive breach in Big Tank here in the wee hours of Wednesday, has saved the lives of several residents of Ramanathapuram and nearby villages.

Ganesan, lascar of Water Resource Division, PWD, who was patrolling the bunds of the tank, one of the largest tanks in the State, noticed a breach at 2 a.m. at eighth sluice at Puthenthal near Achunthanvayal and informed his superiors immediately.

Led by K.S. Abdul Rashid, Assistant Executive Engineer, PWD (Water Resource Division), Ramanathapuram, officials rushed to the spot with 2,000 sand bags within 45 minutes. Velusamy, Village Administrative Officer of Achunthanvayal, also reached the spot.

Meanwhile, villagers of Puthenthal, Muthunal, Achunthanvayal and others started fleeing with their cattle to escape from the fury of flood since water was gushing into their villages.

Mr. Rashid and Mr. Velusamy, who were badly in need of men at that time, sought the help of Ayyappa Textile Mill management. Though the workers were not specialised in plugging breaches, the management stopped production immediately and sent 25 workers to plug the breach. On seeing the enthusiasm shown by mill workers, nearly 125 villagers came forward to help the authorities. Though there was poor visibility, they plugged the breach within four hours.

"Thanks to god, we could successfully plug the massive breach in a record time. Otherwise, it might have been a big loss. I cannot underestimate the services of the mill workers and villagers. They deserve to be appreciated," said Mr. Abdul Rashid. The Collector, K. Sellamuthu, who visited the spot on Wednesday, hailed the efforts of officials and villagers.

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