In the name of ‘operation green hunt', the Government is on a ‘green patches grabbing spree' depriving the tribals and fishermen of their basic right for livelihood, Narmada Bachao Andolan architect and National Alliance People's Movement founder Medha Patkar said on Sunday.
Addressing a press conference here, she was dismayed at the lack of Government's concern over environment protection and long-term real benefit of people through proper dialogue. “If the Naxalites had launched an armed movement for people, we are waging an unarmed struggle and why cannot Government talk to us, which is the basis of democracy,” she questioned.
A ‘Chalo Hyderabad' agitation would be launched by the NAPM on protecting the wetlands, swamps and shores, the severe pollution of ground water and land in the name of setting up industrial corridor along with thermal power projects, she announced. A national seminar of NAPM would be organised in Hyderabad in a couple of months to bring focus on these issues.
Referring to the bauxite mining in Visakhapatnam agency area she said Supreme Court's ruling was enough to stop destruction of the fertile region and congratulated the Samata for their activism. In the catchment area for several perennial streams/rivers this kind of memorandum of understanding (MoU) with profit-addicted companies for mining was wrong, she said, but was quick to add that she was not against mining if done properly.
She made a fervent appeal to the government to provide tenable infrastructure like new fishing jetties and on shore facilities for the fishermen displaced from five villages, who had also lost their livelihood at Bangarammapalem, where Naval Alternative Operations Base was being built.
“Ask politicians like Chiranjeevi to talk about development and protecting the livelihood of indigenous people when they visit,” she said.
Congratulating Union Minister of Environment and Forests Jairam Ramesh for taking some good initiatives, she wanted him to take action on those involved in polluting areas in Andhra Pradesh. While foreign investors were resorting to unethical exploitation of the resources, the executive and judiciary had failed.