Struggle panel to move National Green Tribunal against Centre

Members of the Ramayapatnam Port Sadhana Samiti joined by activists of the TDP, the CPI, and the BJP blocked vehicular traffic on the Chennai-Kolkata National Highway at Tetu near Gudluru in Prakasam district on Tuesday to press for location of the State’s second major port at Ramayapatnam.

The RPSS would move the National Green Tribunal soon against the Centre’s proposal to locate the new port at Dugarajapatnam in the neighbouring Potti Sri Ramulu Nellore district, close to the Pulicat Lake, an avian paradise, said RPSS convener Chunduru Ranga Rao.

The Gudluru police took the activists into preventive custody and restored traffic on the expressway.

Political considerations

TDP Kandukur Assembly constituency in-charge Divi Sivaram alleged that the Centre had overlooked the State government’s recommendation to locate the port at Ramayapatnam for “narrow political reasons.”

Municipal Administration Minister M. Mahidhar Reddy and Congress MP Magunta Srinivasulu Reddy should impress upon Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy to lead a delegation of leaders from the district to New Delhi to impress upon Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi to locate the port in Ramayapatnam.

The port, if located at Dugarajapatnam, would threaten the natural habitat of over three lakh migratory birds, including flamingos and grey pelicans. and affect the livelihood over 40,000 fishermen, said CPI division secretary O. Raghavulu.

RTI invoked

Information under the RTI Act had been sought as to why the report of the techno-economic feasibility study, which favoured Ramayapatnam, had not been taken into consideration, said BJP leader P. Haribabu.

ISRO officials had also objected to location of the port close to the Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota, they said, adding “we will simultaneously wage a legal battle to ensure a new port at Ramayapatnam to spur growth in the backward district.”

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