Telangana: Ghats turn new garbage dump ground

New and old ghats are littered with plastic and other waste.

Hyderabad: Ghats constructed at considerable expense by the state government for the convenience of pilgrims for the Godavari and Krishna Pushkaralus lie in utter neglect across the state, just a year after some of the ghats were constructed.

These public areas for ritual baths and other observances are not regularly cleaned by the irrigation department or local bodies, which has led to accumulation of plastic and other waste, making it not only a health problem, but an eyesore for pilgrims visiting the ghats.

It is the same situation in all the pushkara ghats - especially the one at the famed Gnana Saraswathi Devi temple at Basar in Nirmal district on the banks of the Godavari, and the ghat on the banks of the Krishna River near the Jogulamba temple in Jogulamba district constructed for the Krishna Puskaralu.

Not just the old ghat but even the newly constructed one at Basar is littered with plastic and other waste and piles of garbage.

Complaints are coming in from pilgrims. Municipal Administration Minister K T Rama Rao received a complaint about the garbage strewn all over the ghat in Basar from a resident of Uppal. The minister immediately told the Nirmal district collector to clean up the place. ‘Kindly visit and address the issue’ the minister tweeted.

Endowments Minister A Indrakaran Reddy, who also received a similar complaint, informed the Collector who in turn faxed a letter to the executive engineer, irrigation, Nirmal, to remove the garbage at Basar.

Following the complaint, the government has alerted all district collectors to ensure that the ghats are clean. “Problem is, everyone has forgotten about the ghats after the two pushkaralu. It’s a fact that they are not cleaned,” a senior official said.

Claiming that the festivals had been ignored in undivided Andhra Pradesh, the Telangana government had spent '600 crore for the Godavari pushkaralu in 2015 and '825.16 crore for the Krishna Pushkaralu in 2016, which occurs once in 12 years.

The state government constructed or renovated 106 pushkara ghats for the Godavari Pushkaralu held from July 14 to 25 in 2015 in undivided districts including Basar, Dharmapuri (Karimnagar), Kandakurthi (Nizamabad), Kaleswaram (Karimnagar) Mallakatta, Ramannagudem, Mangapet (Warangal) and Bhadrachallam (Khammam), for three crore pilgrims.

Ninety-four ghats were built and toilets and new roads constructed for the Krishna Pushkaralu, at Jurala, Beechpalli, Rangapur, Alampur, Nadi Agraharam, Chintarevula, Nandimalla, Jataprole, Somasila, Lingala in undivided Mahabubngar and Nagarjunasagar, Wadapally and other places in Nalgonda districts.

The government garnered much good will for its efforts which allowed smooth conduct of the rituals and bathing by lakhs of men, women and children. But there has been no maintenance of the ghats built with taxpayers’ money, as the local bodies responsible for the upkeep have neglected to do so.

Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao inaugurated the puskaralu in 2015 with a holy dip in Dharmapuri with his family. He also led the 12-day Krishna Pushkaralu on August 12, 2016, at Gondimalla pushakara ghat in undivided Mahabubnagar district.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
Next Story