Activists roll up sleeves to save reservoirs in Telangana
Express concern over State’s intentions of repealing GO 111, which was issued to protect Osmansagar, Himayatsagar
HYDERABAD: Leaders of various political parties, academicians, scientists, environmentalists and other professionals and students have castigated CM K Chandrasekhar Rao for announcing plans to repeal the GO-111 in the State Assembly. With the government order no longer in force, Osmansagar and Himayatsagar water reservoirs comes under direct threat of rampant encroachments.
Voices opposing the government move have said that they are ready to fight tooth-and-nail if the State government rescinds the order. Contrary to the CM’s remarks that the reservoirs have become redundant, they said that the two reservoirs continue to providing drinking water to the citizens of Hyderabad even today.
The order GO-111 was issue by the authorities of the erstwhile State of Andhra Pradesh in 1996. It restricts any major construction and industrial activity within 10-km radius of each of the reservoirs. A discussion in this regard, involving political party leaders, scientists, environmental activists and others, was organised by some concerned citizens today.
Speaking on the occasion, Lubna Sarwath of Lake Lovers demanded that the Chief Minister take back his words uttered in the State Assembly on repealing of GO-111. The Supreme Court, on previous occasions has made it clear that it is the duty of the State Government to protect the water bodies from encroachments.
They alleged that the CM wants to turn the catchment areas of the two water reservoirs into concrete jungles. It will be a perilous for the citizens living in the twin cities, which are already prone to floods, if the reservoirs are not protected.“We saw floods in 2020 and 2021 with river Musi draining itself into the city. These floods were mainly due to flowing due huge inflow from the two reservoirs. If the order is repealed and construction is allowed, where the flood water will go? We cannot loose these two precious natural reservoirs for selfish needs of the Chief Minister, we have to protect them at all costs,” she said in a determined voice.
Speaking on the occassion, Telangana Jana Samithi (TJS) President M Kodandaram said that the Telangana government has prepared a water policy with real estate development in mind. It is confusing people by not spelling out real facts around the issue. Former MLA and Congress leader Kodanda Reddy also voiced concern over the CM’s remarks.