Raman Magasaysay award winner Rajendra Singh extended his support to the people of Sundarayyapeta Gram Panchayat near Anakapalle who are fighting against the move by Anakapalle municipality to dump the town’s garbage at Achayyapeta, a village under the panchayat by shifting its compost yard from the town.

Andhra Pradesh Government has set an example for other States in water conservation and protecting water bodies but it was regrettable that an important law, the AP Panchayati Raj Act, which is a Constitutional law and the spirit of Supreme Court judgement in protecting the Common Property Resources (CPRs) were violated when Anakapalle municipality’s garbage was dumped at Achayyapeta, Mr. Rajendra Singh said in a letter sent to Chief Secretary of AP Government on Friday.

The municipality or a government agency did not get the consent of the panchayat through a Gram Sabha to modify the land use of this CPR, Mr. Rajendra Singh said, adding that “dumping of municipal waste and allowing such kind of activity will undermine the name and reputation of the A.P Government which is widely recognised as the pioneering state to protect the power of Panchayathis”.

The land allotted for dumping yard was recognised as a watershed area by the District Water Management Agency and four of the seven checkdams of the Sampathipuram watershed area were located in proposed dumping yard site, he said.

Mr. Rajendra Singh expressed his shock and over the use of police force to disperse villagers at the village on March 22 to allow dumping of garbage which included medical waste, and arrest of 20 villagers against whom criminal cases were booked.