Public hearing negates pesticide unit's proposal
PCB holds hearing on Collectorate premisesExisting unit has no effluent treatment plant
Srikakulam: There was strong opposition to the proposal to expand the Nagarjuna Agri-chem, a pesticides manufacturing unit located at Arinam-Akkivalasa near Chilakapalem in Srikakulam district, at the public hearing organised by the Pollution Control Board (PCB) on the Collectorate premises here on Wednesday.
District Collector V.N. Vishnu, members of the public hearing committee and environmental engineer of the PCB, Vizianagaram, S. Venkateswarulu, were on the dais.
Though there was a section that supported the expansion plan, people's representatives alleged that it was brought by the management. This section of people tried to shout down speakers opposing the proposal.
Sarpanches J. Sankara Rao (Etcherla) and M. Murali (Allinagaram), Lavery Mandal Parsihad president D. Raja Naidu and others opposed the proposal stating that it would cause pollution and health problems to local people.
Representatives of the Human Rights Forum, rythu sangham, CPI(M) and other NGOs also opposed the plan citing similar reasons. The existing unit was established more than a decade ago, but no effluent treatment plant was set up, it was pointed out.
R.V. Rama Rao of the Institute of Planning and Development Studies explained the salient features of the proposal. If implemented, the proposal would ensure direct employment to 85 people and indirect employment to more than 200 people.
When representatives of the plant tried to explain the welfare activities of the management, employment potential, etc., the Collector wanted them to explain the environmental impact of the proposal. He would send a detailed report to the government. P.M.K. Raju of the Nagarjuna Agri-chem was also present.
Police personnel were posted to prevent any untoward incident.