MANGALURU: Fear of pollution, unfulfilled promises and damage to fertile agricultural lands has made locals in Niddodi in Moodbidri taluk of Dakshina Kannada district oppose a mega seafood park which is expected to come up at an estimated cost of Rs 100 crore.
The mega seafood park which provides facilities for processing fish food, their preservation and value addition was announced by district in-charge minister Kota Srinivas Poojary recently under the Pradhan Mantri Matsaya Sampada Yojana. However the locals express fear that once the factory comes up they will have to tackle pollution, damage to their farms etc.
Dinesh, a resident of Kolatharpadav in Niddodi village said that the authorities have not discussed the pros and cons of the project yet. “We want to know about the drainage connection of the factory, the solution to foul smell from the factories and other similar issues. There are over 200 families living in the area. They should not mislead us later. Hence, we urge the authorities to hold meetings with the locals and clear our doubts,” he said.
Another resident said that after MRPL came up near Mangaluru, the locals there are neither provided jobs nor a pollution- free environment as promised initially. “At MRPL, now most of the employees are from other states. It should not repeat here. We have many graduates and qualified youths in our village who should be given jobs if the factory comes up here.
The minister and other officials say that the locals will not face problems if the factory comes up here. They have assured of providing more than 1,500 jobs for the locals but they are not ready to give it in writing. The locals should be given priority for jobs. Also, we fear that our water sources like open wells, ponds will be contaminated with polluted water from the factory and also we will not be able to live there due to foul smell. If these issues are addressed we will allow the factory here,” he said.