ONGC constructs 49 latrines for Irular community

By NT Bureau Published on Jun 21, 2018 01:22 PM IST

T Rajendran opening a latrine.

Marakkanam: As part of its corporate social responsibility (CSR), Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) - Cauvery Basin has constructed 49 household latrines for Irular community in Marakkanam village, Villupuram District at a cost of Rs 18.87 lakh, through M/s Wockhardt Foundation, a Mumbai-based not-for-profit organisation.

The developments were handed over to the families on Wednesday by T Rajendran, Executive Director - Cauvery Basin, ONGC. Speaking on the occasion, he said, "Each of the 49 latrines are of 8 ft X 4 ft size inclusive of bathing space. The project also includes construction of two water tanks of 10,000 litre capacity each, and one bore well for water supply. This project, taken up by ONGC as part of Swatch Bharat Abhiyan, is going to benefit 95 families belonging to Irular community."

Irulas, who are traditionally snake catchers, belong to Scheduled Tribes and are staying in the land allotted by Government of Tamilnadu in Marakkanam village of Villupuram District. Till now, they are in to the practice of open defecation in a vacant land located just opposite to their colony for which they have to cross the busy East Coast Road exposing themselves to grave dangers especially women and children.

"To mitigate this problem of open defecation and to ensure dignity, safety, health and hygiene of Irular Community, ONGC has undertook this construction in their residential colony itself. Under a separate major initiative, with an objective to make villages around its operational areas open defecation free (ODF), we are also constructing 4,050 more latrines in Tamilnadu at a cost of Rs 14.17 crore covering the districts of Ariyalur, Thiruvarur and Ramanathapuram with 1,350 units allotted for each district," he added.

A press note said during the last seven financial years, ONGC has contributed to Tamilnadu State’s exchequer, a total of Rs 2,364 crore as Royalty and VAT and more than Rs 30 crore have been spent during the same period on CSR programs in the operational areas of Tamilnadu. Apart from this, ONGC also provides support for the welfare of most deserving sections of the society through its special component plans and scholarship schemes.