TN CM to lay foundation for desalination plant Thursday

Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami chaired a review meeting of Public Works Department and Buildings and Water Resources Department at the Secretariat in Chennai today.

Chennai: In what might come as a huge relief to the water parched residents of Chennai, the foundation stone for a new desalination plant at Nemmeli will be laid by Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami at 10.30 am tomorrow.

Once completed, the project will supply 150 MLD water to around nine lakh residents residing in areas such as Velacheri, Palavakkam, Perungudi, Thiruvanmiyur, Karapakkam, Adyar, Besant Nagar and Sholinganallur. Pipelines will be laid over 40km, sources said.

The event will be presided over by Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam in which Ministers and senior government officials will also participate. The construction work of the project is expected to begin by the end of this month. It is said the plant will be commissioned in about two years following which the supply to the city’s residents will increase from 830 MLD to 980 MLD. According to reports, the work order was issued on 25 May to Cobra Instalaciones Y Servicious of Spain and Tecton Engineering and Construction of the UAE for setting up the plant.

Sources said the project was delayed due to cases filed by a private contractor. “Several companies filed cases seeking a stay in the tender process stating other companies were not technically qualified. The judgment came in our favour in March and contact was issued to the qualified bidders. The civil construction work should be completed in 24 months, following which trial run will be carried for six months. The company will also be responsible for the operation and maintenance of the plant for the next 20 years,” officials reportedly said.

There are already two desalination plants at Nemmelli and Minjur, each of 100 MLD capacity and a fourth plant with a capacity of 400 MLD is to be commissioned in three years at Perur.