Kakinada: Fertile lands in the Konaseema region of East Godavari district are being turned into illegal aqua tanks by their owners, in violation of regulations. They are spawning prawns on thousands of acres on the banks of River Godavari. As a result, the groundwater is turning salty. Chemicals, being used by the land-owners, are affecting the environment.
Land-owners growing prawns on thousands of acres on the banks of river Godavari
Tanks have emerged virtually overnight in I Polavaram, Katrenikoa, Inavilli, Maramalla, G.Mulapolem, Thallarevu, Kesanakurrapalem, Yedurlanka & Mummidivaram areas of Mummidivaram constituency
Nobody seems to be bothered about enforcing the zonal regulations
Emboldened by the government turning a nelson’s eye to their illegal activities, the land-owners are now attempting to divert the river water flow and convert sand quarries and small islands on the river bed into aqua tanks in collusion with corrupt officials. These activities have rendered the Coastal Regulation Zone regulations and also the permissions of the District Aqua Authority ineffective confining them only to files.
These tanks have materialized overnight in IPolavaram, Inavilli, Maramalla, G.Mulapolem, Thallarevu, Kesanakurrapalem, Yedurlanka and Mummidivarm areas of Mummidivaram constituency while the concerned authorities conspicuous by their absence. These aqua tanks have been dug even on patta lands given to the poor by the government and those leased out by the endowments department in Mummidivaram mandal.
Many persons after taking permission for digging fresh water tanks are converting them into aqua tanks. The inaction on the part of the concerned authorities has resulted in the rise in the illegal activities with land-owners in collusion with politicians digging pits on the islands for prawn
Experts have warned that such digging of pits for aqua tanks poses a threat to the entire Konaseema region and that it would result in submergence to I Polavaram mandal in the event of floods to Godavari. Earlier, these lands used to be lush green with coconut plantations and paddy. But the landscape has changed with the proliferation of aqua tanks.