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Telangana Govt starts land acquisition in Ghatkesar, villagers oppose

Telangana Govt starts land acquisition in Ghatkesar, villagers oppose
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The officials of the revenue department have been making the rounds of Edulabad village in Ghatkesar mandal for the last three days to acquire land to the extent of 73 acres and 10 guntas in survey no 225 for shifting the tanneries from Bholakpur in Musheerabad to Ghatkesar.

As per the HMDA master plan 2013-2031, there is no provision for setting up polluting industries in the Ghatkesar mandal

The officials of the revenue department have been making the rounds of Edulabad village in Ghatkesar mandal for the last three days to acquire land to the extent of 73 acres and 10 guntas in survey no 225 for shifting the tanneries from Bholakpur in Musheerabad to Ghatkesar.

The villagers of Madharam and Edulabad strongly protested against land acquisition with officials from the office of the Tehsildar. Five years ago, a leather factory at Jodimetla was closed down after public outcry. Batte Shankar, sarpanch, Edulabad, Ghatkesar mandal says, “Villages have been completely destroyed as industrial effluents are let out from Hyderabad into the Musi River for the last 40 years and as a result the biggest 2,000 acre Laxminarayana cheruvu is completely polluted.”

As per the HMDA master plan 2013-2031, there is no provision for setting up polluting industries in the Ghatkesar mandal. Srinath, a lawyer who hails from Edulabad village says, “Pollution from the Musi has already had its impact on the village, fishermen have lost their livelihood, people do not want to buy vegetables grown here and people are suffering from health problems. The people have no objection for non-polluting industries.”

The HMDA master plan includes race course, bus terminals, depots, cold storage units, dairy, power plants, IT, gas godowns and filling stations, helipads, logistic parks, and parking lots. Batte Shankar says, “Officials are misleading the villagers by saying that industries are coming up where as they want to shift the tanneries from Bholakpur.

Already, the effluents from industries from Patancheru, Kattedan, Balanagar, Nacharam and now Kukatpally too are being let into the Musi. We will not allow polluting leather factories to come up here.” He added that the people had high hopes that once Telangana was formed the government would do something to the pollution hit villages, but all their hopes are shattered.

A few years back, the government wanted to shift the tanneries to Rampally village in Keesera mandal but the Gas Authority of India (GAIL) raised objection and it was stalled. When the villagers protested Prabhakar Reddy, revenue division officer, Malkajgiri said that he was just doing his duty.

Srinivas, a resident Edulabad says, “The 2,000 acre lake, which was once a major tourist attraction and a source of livelihood for the people, is now so polluted that nobody even goes close by. We are already reeling under health hazards. The government instead of cleaning the lake is now encouraging polluting industries in this area.”

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