Saturday, July 31, 2010

Editorial 'COSTS OF DEVELOPMENT' in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 15July 2010 issue


are being paid, nay extracted, in human blood – of innocent/ignorant poor folk of rural areas all over the third world and such development to benefit mainly the elite sections of the society and even causing extinction of marginal sections of the people. Sompeta Beela is no exception to this general rule of nauseating development in a globalization spree based mainly on privatization syndrome. Vast eco-rich wetlands, providing water for irrigating thousands of acres of paddy fields and coconut groves, source for various varieties of fish and abode for several kinds of birds from far and wide and sustenance for thousands of fishermen in the region, fit to be classified as a Ramsar Convention wetland area to be accorded international recognition, protection and upkeep, are sure to be destroyed by a potentially polluting Thermal Power Plant to be set up by Nagarjuna Construction Company. Well, could they not find barren lands in remote hinterlands for any such ‘development’ if warranted under the circumstances for benefiting the people? And how come eight institutes of repute have given a certificate of barren lands to these precious wetlands which are a source of livelihood to thousands of people? And when the matter of environmental clearance was still under consideration by the National Environment Appellate Tribunal why was the haste in conducting a foundation ceremony amidst anticipated popular indignation? Lo, after all this mayhem, with at least two precious lives sacrificed at the altar, now comes the Appellate Tribunal’s verdict quashing the said clearance; could it not have come a day earlier? Or was all this but the consequence of a preemptive move by the corporate cannibals to present a fait accompli before the forums of law? And why justice, even if and when it comes, is so delayed that it is often futile? It is very tragic and gruesome – this mode of development at the cost of innocent human blood and exploitation of marginal sections needs to be condemned by one and all and avoided with all scrupulous care. What we need is sustainable development, taking into confidence the people of the regions and avoiding even potential dangers to the environment as far as possible and not such bludgeoning inhuman course to fatten the purse of the capitalist rich §§§

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