Other States

Green activist opposes water aerodrome project in Chilika

Green Nobel prize winner environmental activist Prafulla Samantara said his organisation Lok Shakti Abhiya will oppose the proposed water aerodrome project in Chilika lake at national and international forums.

Speaking to media persons in Berhampur on Tuesday, Mr. Samantara said he and his organisation will also unite and organise the fishermen living on Chilika coast to protest against the project that can affect their livelihood.

Letter to CM

He has already written to State Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik urging him to prevent the implementation of this aerodrome project in Chilika lake.

According to Mr. Samantara, the Chilika lagoon is a unique brackish water body that is visited by lakhs of migratory birds. It also comes under the RAMSAR convention declaration on the natural wetlands of international importance. “No project should be taken up in Chilika lake that can affect its biodiversity and have negative impact on the livelihood of thousands of families depending on it,” he said.

In-principle nod

Last week, the proposed amphibian airport project in Chilika lake got in-principle nod from the Central government. Under the project of the Civil Aviation Ministry, water aerodromes are to be constructed in Chilika lake in Odisha, Sabarmati riverfront and Sardar Sarovar Dam in Gujarat in the first phase, with an aim to promote tourism. Mr. Samantara said the project because of sound pollution will dissuade migratory birds from coming to Chilika. It will also affect the fish and other marine life in the lake, thereby affecting the livelihood of the fishermen. He said rather than transforming Chilika into a commercial hub in the name of tourism development, this large lagoon should be protected as a natural habitat. He urged Mr. Patnaik to deny to the central plan of water aerodrome project in Chilika lake.

Meanwhile, several leaders of the ruling BJD in Odisha have opposed the water aerodrome project in Chilika. BJD MP Tathagata Satapathy said this project will drive away migratory birds from the lake. State Minister Maheswar Mohanty and former State minister Sanjay Dasburma opposed the project with the plea that it will have negative impact on the biodiversity of the lake.

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Printable version | Mar 4, 2021 10:55:14 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/green-activist-opposes-water-aerodrome-project-in-chilika/article24694052.ece

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