Citizens voice concern over Mudasarlova lake

Sustainable development project for lake suggested.

Visakhapatnam: The Visakhapatnam Urban Development Authority’s (VUDA) grand plans to turn Mudasarlova into an international tourist destination are beginning to get people concerned.

After a report appeared in this paper, regarding VUDA’s Request for Proposal (RFP), for the appointment of a consultant to prepare a master plan for the project, concerned citizens voiced their apprehensions regarding his plans.

Citizens say that Muda-sarlova Lake, which has already shrunk to half its size due to concretisation, is essential to meeting the city’s water needs. INTACH has decided to take the matter up with VUDA; they suggest that the project be taken on as a sustainable development project, without disturbing the lake. They want VUDA to adopt a sustainable lake management model.

A.V. Monish Row, the president of the Vizagap-atam Chamber of Comm-erce and Industry (VCCI), said, “Though VUDA has been mandated to develop many parks and other natural heritage sites of our city, our progress is unclear. We need a lake management plan, and we need to commit to it, identify and involve stakeholders, set an initial vision, and develop the plan accordingly. We don’t find any such measures being taken by VUDA, and hence are a little apprehensive about the last pristine water body being advertised for international tourism. The lake watershed should be studied and data from the lake basin, such as depth, vegetation, historic water levels, and water quality, should be mapped and collected. Sustainable lake projects are not about concrete constructions along the banks of lakes.”

Mr Monish Row further added that in order to find a balance between environmental protection, economic growth and the social needs of people, a sustainable lake management model was a must.

P.V. Prasad, the convenor of INTACH Vizag, said, “What do they me-an by world-class international tourist destination? We are a little app-rehensive and worried about how these fancy words will be implemented. In Mudasarlova, the greenbelt and the water body should be preserved. Water catchment areas have already shrunk due to large roads and colonies that have come up in and around Mudasarlova Lake. We are not against development, we want sustainable development. The world is advancing and we need to advance too.”

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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