VIJAYAWADA: Environmentalists and irrigation experts have opposed the river view capital proposal of the AP government. Experts are afraid that the Krishna river may end up like the Musi river of Hyderabad, if the new capital is established on the riverfront. Nearly 650 villages, 22 municipalities and two cities depend on Krishna river for drinking water. The opinion of the experts have gained significance as the government is planning to establish the capital on the banks of the Krishna river.
Andhra Pradesh Rytanga Samakya president and former drainage board member Erneni Nagendranath said the river view capital could contaminate the Krishna river. He said that he is not opposing the river view capital idea, but the government should prevent pollution. He asked the government how it would beautify the city canals without stopping the release of drain waters into the canals. One new canal should be provided parallel to the existing city canals to avoid pollution, he added. Noted environmentalist D. Srinivasa Rao said that Varanasi is the best example for pollution and now the government is spending crores to tackle the problem. He said the new capital city might have the same problem and that no buildings should be constructed within a kilometer of the Krishna river.
He regretted that the capital committee led by municipal minister Narayana is visiting capital cities but did not discuss pollution so far.
He recalled that environmentalists had apposed the establishment of the ‘Silpaaramam’ on Bhavani Island, which is in the middle of the Krishna river due to the pollution problem. Establishing the capital upstream near the Prakasam Barrage cannot be allowed as waste will enter Krishna river, he said. AP Pollution Control Board regional office executive manager P.G.K. Sastry said the government should take pollution control measures before establishing the river view capital. He said the government should establish sluice treatment plants. Drains and wastage should be treated and water could be released downstream of the Prakasam barrage, he opined. However, Krishna district irrigation department SE K. Srinivasa Rao said that without stopping the release of water into the city canals it is not possible to stop pollution. He said he had submitted the report to the government. The same applies to the river view capital, experts said.