Hyderabad: Asking the Telangana government why the Musi river could not be revived like the Gujarat government did with the Sabarmati river and and the Rajasthan government the Bhadravathi, the Telangana High Court directed the state government and the GHMC to submit a fresh status report on the action taken towards the protection of the lakes in Hyderabad city.
A division bench comprising Acting Chief Justice Raghavendra Singh Chauhan and Justice A. Rajasheker Reddy was dealing a batch of petitions seeking directions to the authorities to take action to rejuvenate several lakes in the city which were polluted and encroached upon.
Expressing concern over lakes vanishing and the Musi getting polluted, Justice Chauhan pointed out that one could imagine the beauty of the river from a hundred years ago when historical buildings like the High Court, City College and Osmania Hospital were built by the then rulers. The river is now in a filthy state, he said.
Stating that as the city had emerged a role model for the rest of the country, every citizen and the concerned authorities must do all that they can to restore the glory of the lakes in the city, Justice Chauhan said.
Mr Sameer Ahmed, counsel for one of the petitioners, urged the court to direct the authorities to protect Malkam Cheruvu. He said the that with the help of the GHMC, a private real estate company under the cover of corporate social responsibility had brought about the destruction of the lake in the name of beautification by laying roads adjacent to the lake in order to market their constructions. Counsel requested the court to give directions to the private firm not to destroy the lake and its vicinity.
Advocate General B.S. Prasad filed a report about the action plan that was undertaken by the authorities to protect the lakes. Mr Prasad submitted that the government had floated tenders for the implementation of the Geo-Tube technology for the treatment of sewage and for their plans to use drone cameras to curb pollution and encroachment of lakes.
While perusing the report and pictures submitted by the Advocate General, the court told counsel for the petitioner that action was being taken towards the protection of the lakes. The bench asked counsel to not go by illusions as there would always be a difference between the perception of a common man and that of experts.
The court referred to Duryodhana’s illusion in the Maya Sabha, in an episode from the Mahabharata, as comparison. In reply, counsel argued that the prevailing conditions must be witnessed first hand for which the court needed to allow permission to visit the location. The bench directed the government and the GHMC to submit a fresh status report about the action taken towards the protection of the lake by April 29.