A football ground is in making at the Neelankarai beach in Chennai, Tamil Nadu. The place is a nesting site of Olive ridley sea turtles. Conservationists raise concerns against it. The ground work violates the Coastal Zone Management (CZM) rules. The responsible body is Greater Chennai Corporation.
The Coastal Resources Centre authorities acknowledged that the construction work is not permissible under CZM regulations; even for the corporation. The environmentalists are protecting the site for the turtles. Making the site into a gaming place will have deep impact on nesting process of the turtles.
“ People can have other places for the purpose of games but encroachment of beaches will displace the natural vegetation of such places ” said Supraja Dharini from Tree Foundation, Chennai. “ Raising voice against such encroachment invites the criticism that we are against the development “ she said.
The Olive ridley is a small sea turtle, with an upper side size of an adult averaging 60 to 70cm. Weight of an adult Olive ridley sea turtle ranges from 25 to 46 kg. It is found in warm and tropical waters, primarily in the Pacific and Indian Oceans.
Though this turtles are plenty in the world, they have declined by more than 30% from the historic levels. The interesting fact is that female turtles return to the very same beach from where they first hatched, to lay their eggs.