Aranumala airport;Type of destructions.

published on March 6, 2013

Having seen how precious the tiny hamlet of Aranmula is, let us focus on how any change in the existence of these aspects would turn out to be disastrous. Today we shall focus on how the proposed private international airport will reclaim large chunks of cultivable land and swipe off ecological landmarks.

The Green Field International Airport of KGS Group requires 2000 acres, out of which 347.556 acres of cultivable land was required to be leveled. According to People’s Action Council, Aranmula half of the 170-acre Aranmula puncha (paddy field) was already leveled into plain land. They have also revealed that an alarming reclamation of not less than 400 acres of waterlogged paddy fields is necessary for implementing the project.

Reclamation of paddy fields which will put a full stop to the farming activities of this agricultural village will be accompanied by yet another potential danger. The renovation, leveling and strengthening of wet lands, paddy fields and rivulets will require tremendous quantity of earth for the plugging in.

The process will require exorbitant digging of the earth or blasting of an entire section of hillock for procurement of the required quantity of earth. This can therefore be seen as the beginning of a chain of destructions.  

The next link in the chain of ruin will be the untold damage that will be caused to Kozhithodu. The main tributary of Pamba River, Kozhithodu separates Aranmula and Edayaranmula. It is an important water source for agriculture lands in nearby villages and for drinking water in the region.

All activities in the name of development will fill and clog this precious water source. The construction activities which are to ensue later will also cause utmost pollution to this natural sensitive zone.  However, villagers claim that a portion of Kozhithodu is already clogged, because it was filled with sand in the initial days, in the name of developmental activity.

“It has been decided to re-start paddy cultivation in as much as 6 acres of land. We have obtained documents which show that cultivation was done here last year as well. The fields are now clogged with water because the prime tributary of river Pampa, Kozhithodu has been wiped off, after being filled with sand,” state a report from the Aaranmula Paithruka Grama Karma Samiti.

“Farmers have now submitted a plea to the Irrigation and Agriculture departments to get the sand removed to receive the copious flow of water. However, the government remains callous and indifferent as usual. A very clever move to destroy cultivation and agriculture in the area, so that larger schemes like the airport comes into existence. All they want to do at any cost is support and propel the moves of the land mafia,” cited a statement issued by the,” the report adds.

Apart from having wetlands and being the rice bowl of Kerala, the area is a flood-prone region of the Pampa River, having natural reservoirs that help recharge water flow into rivers. Therefore filling up of these vast tracts will definitely be detrimental to the regional ecology.

Along with reclamation of land, which will mean wiping out of Aranmula, Mallappuzhassery and Kidangannur villages, the eviction of hundreds of families is yet another fear that has been gripping the area. Reports state that as many as 3,000 families will be evicted.

A small statement of the ecological destruction that would happen if the proposed airport is to come up has been stated. Reality, however, stands a million fold gruesome.

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