ENERGY GENERATION……AT WHAT COST ????????
Upinnangadi, a small town in the district of Dakshina Kannada ,is around 70km away from Manipal. This place has a lush greenery all around and the most important environmental element is it’s river sangam of Nethravati and Kumaradhra which flows through the middle of the place the whole year long.
Five years back, a private firm by name Sahasthra Lingeshwar Pvt.Ldt came up with an idea of setting up a mini hydro-electric power plan. They had support from a German firm which was ready to fund the project with undisclosed norms.
The taluk officer created an official statement that “Sahasthra Lingeshwr Mini Hydel Power Project is planned in a dry area with few acres of agricultural fields at the exterior which may be affected”. Later on during the inspection the officials were given money to report the site in the firm’s favour. The power project got its approval.
Now the firm went on to surrounding agricultural area and marked the fields which would submerge under the water during the construction and after the construction. They promised compensations to the farmers.
Ashok Kumar Rai, the Dist.general secretary of Karnataka Rajya Raitara Sanga, noted all of these proceedings and decided to fight against it.
He has 7 acres of land with arecnut, coconut, coco, banana and rice plantations. During normal rainy season few farms submerge into the water which is for a period of 4 months i.e from June to September.
Usually, during monsoon his half acre of land used to be in water where he never did any plantation but now due to the construction of power plant his 5 acres of land is in water. As the water would be stagnant, his plantations are getting various diseases as a result he is losing his plants and livelihood.
According to him the promised compensation has not been allotted to any farmer and at present the project is on its progress as a results more than 600 families with 900 acres of land including agricultural and forest region would be in water.
Now, it’s our task to think about it and react about such a power generation at the cost of 600 families and 900 acres of productive land.
Usage of technology for betterment of human life is accepted but not at the rate of humans and nature.