Staff Reporter

Its convenor seeks probe into the death of fish in Yeleru canal

Collector urged to prosecute the culprits

The forum cautions Andhra Pradesh Pollution Control Board

VISAKHAPATNAM: The Forum for Better Visakha (FBV) has expressed concern over industrial pollution in and around the city and demanded a detailed investigation into death of fish in Yeleru canal due to chemical pollution.

Expressing his anguish at rise in pollution levels, FBV convener and former IAS officer E.A.S. Sarma cautioned again the AP Pollution Control Board and other government agencies of the hazards of polluting industrial units and the need for strict enforcement of the provisions of the Environment Protection Act, 1986.

After some villagers complained of pollution by Pharma City and Simhadri Thermal Power Plant, the forum served a notice last month on the Central and State agencies seeking legal action against certain industries for violating the pollution norms and causing health hazards.

Against this background, the forum stated that it was distressed at the reports appearing in the press of hazardous chemicals being dumped by some anti-social elements into Yeleru Canal near Lankelapalem village, as evidenced by the death of fish on a large-scale.

Major concern

“We appeal to APPCB and the District Collector to make an urgent investigation, identify the culprits and prosecute them for this grievous offence that would have led to loss of life and widespread damage to the health of the people living downstream,” Mr. Sarma stated.

He demanded that the investigation should determine the nature of the pollutants and trace them to such industrial units that are known to have delayed setting up adequate effluent treatment facilities.

‘No action taken’

Mr. Sarma regretted that no action to their complaint on pollution of Uracheruvu near Tanam village adjacent to Pharma City was taken. The district authorities should ensure that the culprits were subject to fast track criminal prosecution so that the people’s confidence in the efficacy of the laws and the institutions may be restored.