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Sunday, June 13, 2010

Stripping Our Assets?

Talking about Assam can bring many pictures to one’s mind however, for those who have visited this region will surely relate it to as abode of beauty. Being a native of this land I have much shared about its enchanting beauty. Nature has enormously showered its blessings with mountains, rivers, hills, flora & fauna and above all the rich heritage.
BUT, maybe not for long the mystic land will continue to be so. This land might gradually cease to be a poet’s dream. The resources here are in abundance but, its proper utilization has been in question ever since.
Development has definitely taken place in the region. But here is something which is not acceptable in the name of development. The environment of the Northern bank of Guwahati is being challenged by the vested interested of a leading cement brand named Topcem. Recently it has been in news that this said company has acquired a huge plot and sought permission to come up with a cement plant. This has faced strong opposition from the locals and the matter is being addressed to Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Environment and Forests Jairam Ramesh. Further enquiry is going on though the concerned authority has been trying to convince the use of modern technology to reduce environmental hazards. Whatever be the technology, it cannot stop the emission of hazardous pollutants that arises from a cement plant.
The tract of land for the proposed cement factory is surrounded by a number of educational institutions including IIT Guwahati, Kamrup District Civil Hospital and also some other offices. North of Guwahati is also known for its historical relevance which is now put to stake. This area on the banks of river Brahmaputra is densely populated and also home for cultural heritage.
Not getting into depth though it cannot be ignored either, it is well understood how the environmental license will be acquired. Sadly, in the name of development the natural bounty will be tampered. Health of the people and the flora and fauna will be facing danger. Even the cultural legacy might be affected at some point of time. No doubt the locals will be accommodated as lower grade employees but the big bite will be the diet of someone sitting far away in luxurious offices. Once the production starts, as a standard practice by such companies, they will not take responsibility of so many adversities that they prepare to bring along with production of cement.
This objection should be treated big. It is a move to save our land, a call to retain its natural beauty. We need to oppose this lest we feel stripped and deprived of our age old assets. With this aspect of development, our coming generations will never see the land as we do. They will be bereft of living in a green land. The world will never again remember Assam for its beauty.

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