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Beautiful Vizag becoming a concrete jungle

Beautiful Vizag becoming a concrete jungle
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Vizag once known for its beautiful coastline spread over 36 km, high hills and greenery is fast becoming a concrete jungle. The three positive aspects were pulling tourists to the steel city.

Visakhapatnam: Vizag once known for its beautiful coastline spread over 36 km, high hills and greenery is fast becoming a concrete jungle. The three positive aspects were pulling tourists to the steel city. But now not only the environment is getting affected, but also the temperatures are rising significantly, with the green cover dwindling. In the name of development, hills are being allocated to several infrastructure organisations.

  • Environment getting affected
  • Temperatures rising significantly
  • Green cover dwindling
  • Hilly areas being destroyed

With the population touching 22 lakh, city residents are not hesitating to build houses atop hills. Even spots on the city outskirts are becoming real estate centres. Simultaneously, industrial pollution is rising, harming the environment. The day temperatures rose steeply, mainly because of the Hud Hud cyclone, which severely damaged green cover and the forests.

These changes are giving rise to natural calamities; point out environmentalists while expressing concern over these developments. Several non-governmental organisations are demanding steps to increase the green cover in the city. Dhanunjay, a scholar in environmental studies, told The Hans India that already in the name of IT hub and tourism centres 26 hilly places have been allotted to several organisations.

Many organisations have expressed concern over the indiscriminate blasting of hilly areas. Although the State government showed expenditure of hundreds of crore for giving a fillip-up to the forest cover after the Hud Hud cyclone many of the planted saplings withered. Fresh budget estimates are being prepared by officials to plant new saplings.

It appears that the city municipal corporation has failed to design projects on a permanent basis in making the stipulation that every industry should set apart 30 per cent of its area as green field. Failing which the industries have to pay to the government ten per cent of their gross profits for raising parks and green cover.

With the concerned officials adopting an indifferent attitude the industries are neglecting development of the green field, incurring the wrath of environmentalists. The environmentalists feel that if such stipulations like the green field are strictly followed Vizag could be converted into a green city.

Environmentalist JV Ratnam told THI that people should be involved as partners by the government in its efforts to create awareness on protecting the environment. There is an urgent need for officials to initiate special steps to protect the environment. Only then it will be possible to make the city pollution-free.

By S Anuradha

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