Business Line | Visakhapatnam, July 18, 2005
SAMATA, an NGO working in the agency area of Visakhapatnam district, has urged the State Government to scrap the MoU signed recently with the Jindal group for exploitation of bauxite reserves in the region and setting up a smelter here.
At a press meet here on Monday, Mr Rebbapragada Ravi, Executive Director, said that the Government had signed the MoU with the Jindal group in a hurry.”It will result in an ecological disaster in the tribal tracts in the eastern ghats. The economic benefits resulting from the project are elusive and in any event they will not reach the tribals,” he said.
He said bauxite mining in Orissa and elsewhere had left a trail of destruction and the tribals were affected. Jobs promised to the tribals were not given, but the mining sites were completely destroyed.
Water resources in the tribal tracts would be damaged beyond repair.
“As it is, the surface run-off is very high in these areas and the groundwater will be completely exhausted. Vizag is facing water scarcity and it will be aggravated. The mining has to take place in the catchment areas of rivers and rivulets in the agency such as Gostani, Varaha, Yeleru and Sileru,” he said.
Most of the jobs would be technical and in the modern mechanised mining sites there was very little scope for tribals getting employed, he said.
The project would change the entire ecology of the region and should be opposed by all, he pleaded.
Samata and other groups would take up a similar campaign against the Jindal project, he added.