Hyderabad: Taking suo motu cognisance of media reports highlighting the plight of locals due to heavy police presence in and around Amaravati, the Andhra Pradesh High Court on Monday issued a slew of directions to the government over the ongoing agitation of farmers there.

The court ordered the police to allow villagers to visit temples and asked them not to create hindrances in the movement of the public in the area. It directed the superintendents of police of Guntur and Krishna districts and the police chief of Vijaywada to adhere to rules.

The court directed the Chief Secretary, DGP, Principal Secretary (Home) and Principal Secretary (GAD) to stick to the Police Act, citing that 10 petitions have been filed in the past three weeks against the imposition of IPC Sections 30 and 144 in the capital region villages.

The high court ordered the government to issue instructions to the police to not to check the houses of the villagers in the capital region. The government was also asked to provide medical assistance to the farmers and the general public injured because of the police action in the area.

The HC has asked the state to provide the details of the arrested persons. It sought to know as to what kind of action was initiated against the police personnel who violated CrPC 46. It asked the government to file a counter-affidavit by January 17, the date of the next hearing.

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One comment on "Don’t obstruct public movement in capital region: HC to govt"

  • Observations on Eenadu Report on Amaravati by Dr. S. Jeevananda Reddy:

    Eenadu [15th January 2020] presented on page 6 defending Amaravati as Capital using the NGT report titled “Amaravati has no submergence effect”. Let me present part of my observations on DC debate on NGT dated 13th March 2016:

    “Animosity exists between judiciary and expert members on the NGT benches. This is resulting in poor quality judgments. To avoid such scenarios, the benches need be broad-based. In cases where the lapses were on the part of the government, both NGT and the judiciary failed to deliver the right judgment. For example, an Andhra Pradesh High Court bench dumped the Supreme Court order and the “precautionary principle” in to the dustbin and delivered judgments in favour of government actions vis-à-vis the setting up of the Shamshabad airport in Hyuderabad and the Pharma City in Visakhapatnam. The negative impacts of these judgments are visibly seen now. Here even the pollution control board cleared the projects with majority of the member being government officials. Mention must also be made of what NGT benches in Chennai and Delhi did while dealing with the issues of setting up the AP Capital city in Guntur-Vijayawada and holding the World Cultural Festival in New Delhi, respectively. In these cases, identifying an alternative site (Part of EIA) should have solved the problem. — This spirit is not always evident in the decisions of both NGT and the judiciary.”

    Let me present another example on the way NGT acts: I filed a PIL in AP High Court in 2007 on protecting the two drinking water lakes that are protected by GO111 and Supreme Court order “Precautionary principle” and the government submitted a memo accepting in principle GO111 and agreed to establish Lake Protection Authority [but implemented committee in place of authority]. Yet violations are rampant. While my case is still in the High Court, NGT accepted the case on the same issue but achieved nothing. Violations are going on with more vigour. Even the Police Department come up with a more dangerous proposal to destroy the lakes. With my intervention, they withdrew from this but now another government department – supposed to protect the lakes – initiated the same. Same is the case with Amaravati capital.

    A “Vijayawada City Disaster Management Plan – 2015” was prepared by Nagarjuna University in Guntur. It observed that “Vijayawada City is one of the multi-hazard risk City in the country and it is prone to various natural disasters Viz., floods, cyclones, landslides, earthquakes, health hazards, high temperatures and other extreme hydro-meteorological hazards that periodically witnessing and impact the lives and livelihoods of city dwellers.”

    Another report on Cyclones: Nine Coastal districts of Srikakulam to Nellore are highly vulnerable to tropical cyclones. 71 cyclones affected this zone during 1892 to 2004. Another report presented cyclone tracks from 1977 to 2019. Some of them pass between Ongole and Machilipatnam. The November 1977 cyclone has devasted areas in Krishna River delta regions. The island of Diviseema was hit by six meter [20 ft] high storm surge.

    Let me give another simple example, how government departments play mischief. Central Water Commission [CWC] as part of state bifurcation stopped the Polavaram project getting National Status [but received 90%] by bringing forward the maximum flood flow as 50 lakh cusecs [with this whether there is a dam or not, Badrachalam will be submerged] by raising the original level by 25-30%. Accordingly government submitted the revised plan increasing the cost from Rs. 10,000 crores to around Rs. 16,000 crores and thus caused delay in the project construction. The fact is that the raise in flood flow by 25-30% is due to method adapted by CWC in estimating the river water flows. This underestimates the evapotranspiration and thus overestimates surface runoff. This thus has results an increase from 2443 to 3144 tmc ft in the case of Krishna River on an average. Same will be the case for all rivers in India. This is the main issue in Supreme Court case.

    Dr. S. Jeevananda Reddy

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