Mrunal Manmay Dash

In a unique sign of protest, a lawyer cycled from Motu in Malkangiri to Puri against construction of the disputed Polavaram project in Andhra Pradesh.

As per reports, lawyer Lambodhar Turuk set out from Motu after collecting water from the confluence of Saberi and Sileru river. He crossed many ghats and jungles on his way to Puri which took him around 20 days.

Turuk will pour the water he has brought from Motu in the sea.

Speaking about his demands, Turuk said, “At least 130 villages in Malkangiri are going to be inundated due to the Polavaram project. Their economy will completely collapse. Thousands of hactres of forest land will also be deployed.”

“I have come to Puri to pray before Lord Jagannath so that the project does not fructify. I have brought the water from sangam. I will return home after offering the water to the sea. The project is being developed over the waters of Sileru and Saberi river. So I brought the water from there to offer it here at the sea hoping to stop the project,” Turuk said.

The Polavaram Irrigation Project is a Multipurpose one conferring irrigation benefits in the upland areas of Visakhapatnam, East Godavari, West Godavari and Krishna Districts of Andhra Pradesh. It also envisages drinking water supply to Visakhapatnam Township and other towns and villages enroute and industrial water supply to the Visakhapatnam coast based Steel Plant and other industries in the vicinity. It will also generate of Hydel Power.

The Project is located in Andhra Pradesh near Polavaram village about 34 KM upstream of Kovvur - Rajahmundry road and 42 KM upstream of Sir Arthur Cotton Barrage.

Odisha has been vehemently opposing the project citing inundation of many villages in the reservoir.