Poor planning to blame for frequent flooding, says CPI

Remedial measures not being taken, says Satyanarayana Murthy

Communist Party of India (CPI) State assistant secretary J.V. Satyanarayana Murthy on Wednesday alleged that some areas in the city were vulnerable to frequent flooding because of poor planning on the part of authorities despite crores of rupees being spent on planning and development works.

The city received 33 cm of rain in less than 24 hours during Cyclone Gulab. Low-lying areas were inundated as usual. Though crores of rupees were spent a few years ago on diversion of water released from the Meghadrigedda Reservoir, in order to prevent flooding of the airport, the road leading to the airport was submerged and water had also entered the airport. Though flight operations were unaffected, passengers had to wade through water to reach the taxi stand, Mr. Murthy said.

Similarly, several areas between H.B. Colony and Swatantranagar were inundated due to the torrential rains. Mr. Murthy wondered how H.B. Colony, which was developed by the government some years ago, could be inundated. “This indicates a lack of planning. Remedial measures are not being taken to prevent future submersion, though this has become a recurring feature. Sheelanagar is another area which is being inundated frequently,” he said.

Referring to the warnings of scientists and experts, Mr. Murthy said that in the future, extreme weather events such as torrential rains, floods and cyclones would become more frequent. The State government was highlighting the immense potential of Visakhapatnam as the ‘executive capital’ of A.P. and the VMRDA has also come out with a new master plan, but no action plan has been made to prevent future flooding, he said.

Mr. Murthy said that the submersion of areas surrounding the Gangavaram Port has increased after the construction of the port. He opined that the port authorities should own up responsibility to prevent flooding of those areas. He also condemned the poor response of the officials to the disappearance of Krishna Vamsi Reddy, a youth from Peda Gantyada, who went missing in the floods. Vamsi and his sister, who lost their parents, were living with their grandparents. He urged the government to come to the aid of the family.

State-level workshop

Mr. Murthy said that the State-level workshop of the party would be held in the city on October 8 and 9. Over 350 district-level leaders of the party were expected to participate in the meeting, which was being held to chalk out the course of action in the fight against the Central government’s ‘anti-worker’, ‘anti-people’ and ‘anti-farmer’ policies. The CPI was already involved in the stir against the decision of the Centre on privatisation of Visakhapatnam Steel Plant (VSP), he said.

CPI general secretary D. Raja, Polit Bureau Member K. Narayana and State president K. Ramakrishna are scheduled to attend the workshop.

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