Chennai: Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami this morning laid the foundation stone for the desalination plant coming up at Nemmeli in Kanchipuram district.
Participating with Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam and almost his whole Cabinet, the Chief Minister accepted the arathi after the bhoomi pooja. Palaniswami, Panneerselvam, and other senior ministers placed the bricks in their designated places in the pit dug at the spot where the plant is to come up.
Earlier, they paid floral tributes to a huge portrait of AIADMK’s late supremo J Jayalalithaa, beautifully decorated with jasmine strings and placed on the huge stage.
The Rs 1,689 crore project will supply 150 MLD water to around 9 lakh residents residing in areas such as Velacheri, Palavakkam, Perungudi, Thiruvanmiyur, Karapakkam, Adyar, Besant Nagar and Sholinganallur. Pipelines will be laid over 40 km, sources said.
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 judgement came in our favour in March and the 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 Nemmeli 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.