PREDATORY INDUSTRIALISATION AND ENVIRONMENTAL DEGRADATION మార్చి 17, 2007Posted by Telangana Media in Telangana Articles.
DEGRADATION : A CASE STUDY OF MUSI RIVER
Muthyam Reddy Katta.
Development is usually seen in terms of quantitative parameters like number of industries, volume of production, level of technology, number of jobs proveided and per capita income. But, What is ignored in this perception of development is its impact on natural resources like soil, water bodies, green cover including forest, air and biological species. However, in recect times our planners have begun to realise how the environment has been neglected in the development strategy hitherto in practice. In the Eighth Five Year plan Document, the Government of India admits, “Much of the water resources and air in the country continue to be polluted affecting human health. Besides traditional domestic pollutants, there is increasing contamination by chemicals, heavy metals and other toxic substances which are thrown in the river and this is due to careless industrial and agricultural practices.
The present paper deals with the above issues raised in the 8th Plan Document. To do so the paper selects the case of River Musi flowing through the heart of Hyderabad City and tries to show how both domestic and industrial pollutants are thrown into the river, thus affecting downstream agriculture and human health. The paper consists of three sections. section I discusses some of the salient features of the Musi river and the extent of irrigation provided by the anicuts on the river. Section II describes the growth of the city in terms of population and industries and the consequent pressure to tap Musi waters for drinking and industrial purposes. Section III describes how the river Musi got polluted by the domestic sewage and industrial effluents, affecting the downstream agriculture and groundwater. I
The topogrphy of the city of Hyderabad falls with in the two river basins viz: Godavari and
Krishna. The industrial zones on the western borders of the city located in the Medak district and part of Ranga Reddy district fall with in the
Godavari basin. And the rest of the industrial zones fall within the
Krishna basin. Most part of the urban conglomerations of the city fall with in the
Krishna basin. Musi river flowing over Deccan Plateau is one of the major tributaries of the
Krishna river. It originates in the Ananthagiri Hills of Hyderabad District (renamed as Rangareddy distict) of Andhra Pradesh. And Musi joins the river Krishna at Vadepally
Miryalguda taluk of Nalgonda district after travelling 166 miles from its origination. The catchment area at its confluence is 4,329 sq.miles. Musi also has three tributaries, viz., Easa, Aleru and Paleru. While Easa is on the upstream of
Hyderabad, Aleru and Paleru rivers join the river Musi in the downstream of the city. There are about thirty anicuts constucted across the Musi river on its length starting from Hyderabad upto Vadepally where it merges with the
Krishna river. These anicuts were constructed during the last part of the nineteenth century by the erstwhile Nizam Government. The number of anicuts and the area irrigated by each anicut in the Ranga Reddy and Nalgonda districts are presented in Table 1. The anicuts which fall under the jurisdiction of Bhongir Revenue Division (Nalgonda district) are only considered in Table
Anicut-wise Ayacut under Musi in Nalgonda and Ranga Reddy Districts
——————————————————————————————————- S.No. Name of the anicut No.of Acres District
———————————————————————————————————— 1. Uppal anicut 2183.14 Rangareddy 2. Narayana Rao Katwa 3092.34 Rangareddy 3. Bommala Katwa 155.00 Rangareddy 4. Abdullapur Katwa 130.00 Rangareddy 5. Vemula Katwa 412.00 Rangareddy 6. Heera Katwa 416.16 Rangareddy 7. Bacharam Katwa 116.35 Rangareddy 8. Chowdhari Katwa 230.00 Rangareddy a.Sub total 6735.23 9. Pillayapally 2256.30 Nalgonda 10. Anantaram 325.00 Nalgonda 11. Inkiryal 1604.34 Nalgonda 12. Alinagar 2910.16 Nalgonda 13. Rundravallay 136.14 Nalgonda 14. Ravulapally 795.27 Nalgonda 15. Indiryal 846.00 Nalgonda 16. Suryapally 368.38 Nalgonda 17. Sangam 443.00 Nalgonda 18. Dharmareddypally 1486.23 Nalgonda 19. Bheemalingam 3077.10 Nalgonda 20. Asifnagar 2667.10 Nalgonda 21. Vemulakoda 598.16 Nalgonda 22. Laxmapur 823.19 Nalgonda 23. Duppally 532.08 Nalgonda b.Sub total 18342.23 Grand Total (a+b) 25078.06———————————————————————————————————— Anicuts which fall under Suryapet Revenue Division of Nalgonda District are not presented as data on them are not available. These anicuts serve over forty villages under Musi. The entire area under the Musi anicuts was localised for paddy cultivation only for both seasons, viz. Kharif and Rabi. The construction of these anicuts didi not cause any displacement of people as there was no submergence of villages and land by the teservoirs. Actually, the land gettig irrigated under these reservoirs is more than by the reservoirs. Actually, the land getting irrigated under these reservoirs is more than what was considered to be its potential. In other words, the land being irrigated is more than which is shown in the Table 1. The discussions made with people reveal that the land, actually, irrigated may be around 50,000 acres whereas the ayacut area of all these anicuts put together to be around 25,000 acres as show in Table 1. The lands which were not localised originally were uplands mainly located on the right side of the canal. Now these are being cultivated as the water is in plenty.
So it is commonly felt in the case of major irrigation projects that the utilisation pattern is in the range from 50 to 70 per cent of the irrigation potential. In the case of minor irrigation projects, however, the utilisation pattern is far better. But in the case of irrigation projects (minor) on the river Musi the utilisation is 100 per cent more than what was originally planned. This is a unique case in the history of Indian irrigation systems. Further, the river waters are being tapped for irrigation through different systems. Every village has one or two tanks which are connected to a canal coming from the anicut on the river. These systems are well maintained and managed by themselves. Farmers remove obstacles viz. silt, weeds, creepers grown on the canal bed and also repair breaches on the canal bund. In doing the above works, the farmers contribute their labour and money on the basis of their land share in the ayacut. Information to the farmers about the village level meetings related to the above works in usually passed through drum beating in the villages. Caste, faction and parties do not come in the way of the Farmers Management Irrigation Systems (FMIS). IIThe foundation stone of
Hyderabad city was laid in the year 1581 AD by Sultan Mohammed Quli Qutub Shah, the fourth ruler Qutub Shahi dynasty. The city was modelled on one of the Iranian cities. The city started growing since then. The subsequent history can be divided into three periods, viz.,1) Moghal / Nizam, 2)
State, and 3) Post-1956 period when the formation of A.P.State took place. During these periods the congestion of the city increased further and today it is the fifth largest city in
India with the population of 43.40 lakhs (1991). In the beginning of twentieth century the population of the city was 4.48 lakhs(1901) and after five decades i.e., by 1951 it reached to 12.8 lakhs. Between 1981 and 1991 an increse of 67 per cent is noticed (increased from 27.59 lakhs in 1981 to 43.40`lakhs in 1991). The area under Municipal Corporation limits is 172.6 sq.km. If urban agglomeration is added to it the area occupied by the twin cities of
Hyderabad and Secunderabad would be 727 sq.km at present. Industrial Growth
Hyderabad has become one of the most important centres for trade, commerce and industry during the recent years. The city has long industrial history. The oldest industrial areas of
Hyderabad are Azamabad, Musheerabad, Sanathnagar, Kavadigusda, New Bhoiguda and Lalaguda. Ali of them are located in the north side of Musi river. During the last four decades eleven more major industrial estates have come up, outside the Corporation limits and some of them fall under Ranga Reddy and Medak district limits. The number of units, investment and employment provided by them are presented in Table 2. Table 2 No. of Industrial Units during 1993————————————————————————————————————Sl.No.Location & Category No.of Units Investment Employment (in Lakhs) (in Nos.)———————————————————————————————————— 1.
Hyderabad a) Large and Medium 66 35480 22717 b) Small 5941 4543 45318 2. Ranga Reddy District a) Large and Medium 152 203347 56061 b) Small 6012 19858 67084 3. Medak District a) Large and Medium 66 31643 14384 b) Small 86 1105 1893 Total 12323 295976 208357 a) Large and Medium 284 270470 94062 (2.3) (91.4) (45.1) b) Small 12039 25506 114295 (97.7) (8.6) (54.9) —————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————– This table has its own limitation in explaining the growth of industries as there is no year-wise break-up of firms. The growth does not mean that they have grown enough in the right direction to meet the demands of the people and to generate required level of employment. It is surprising to note that a number of over twelve thousand units provide employment to about two lakh people only. Ninety eight per cent of the units are in the small scale sector with only around nine per cent of the totel investment and with near an equal contribution to employment. However, these numerous industries contribute enough to pollute the land and water as discussed below. However, they seem to have enough capacity to pollute the land and other natural courses (discussed elsewhere).
Water Supply and Sanitary System September 1908 experienced heavy rains in the catchment area of the Musi. The Musi River swelled up into high floods and submerged a major part of the Hyderabad city as a result of which around 15,000 people died.The Nizam Government was upset with this tragedy and requested Mr.M.Vishweshwarajah to Suggest measure to control the floods in the River Musi.At the instance of the Nizam Government, Mr. M. Vishweshwaraiah planned two reservoirs viz., Himayatsagar and Osman Sagar, on the Musi. And the water stored in these two reservoirs is exclusively used for drinking. House connections (taps to individual houses) were given only in the year 1931 when the supply of water from these two reservoirs was begun. The governments of presrnt period (after 1956) added two more reservoirs for the supply of drinking water. Table 3 provides the quantity of water supplied through different reservoirs. Table 3 Drinking Water Supply to Twin Cities —————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————– Sl.No. Source Year of Commissioning Quantity MLD MGD—————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————- 1. Osman Sagar 1923 115 25 2. Himayatsagar 1927 90 20 3. Manjeera Phase-I 1965 68 15 4. Manjeera Phase-II 1981 135 30 5. Manjeera Phase-III 1992 135 30 6. Manjeera Phase-IV 1994 135 30 Total 678 150—————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————– Though the capacity of the reservoirs is 150 MGD,the actual supply is only 120 MGD water is not sufficient to meet the present demand, groundwater is extensively exploited by individual households through bore wells about which no information is available. If the groundwater consumption is added to the volume of water supplied by Metro Water Works, then, the overall water consumption of
Hyderabad city would be far higher. Coming to sanitary system, it may be stated that this system was started in 1921 when the city`s population was 4.7 lakhs. The total length of sewerage lines is 1630 kms. This figure however, excludes nine municipalities which have no underground sewerage system and this may account for 40 per cent. Ultimately, these sewer lines have now become insufficent to carry on the present load of sewage, which is being demonstrated by frequent overflows on the city roads. Sewage is defined as the waste matter generated by human beings coupled with other uses of water. As per general norms, the waste water generation would be about 80 per cent of the water supplied for domestic purpose and 3-5 per cent of water used by the industries. On this basis, the total quantity of waste water generated and released into Musi river should be around 120 Million Gallons a Day (MGD). But Subba Rao`s paper puts it as 96 MGD only. This is because he did not take into account the groundwater utilisation. However due to the above volume of sewage entering the Musi, the river which is a seasonal one has now turned into a perennial sewage line.
It is interesting to observe that the increased waste water generation drained into Musi river has paradoxically helped the downstream agriculture in several ways. Since the waste water is perennially released, it is found that more area is cultivated for the production of water intensive crops like paddy.Also, the down stream agriculture is stabilised with two crops in a year because of assured water supply (sewage ?). Moreover, the groundwater table is also rechargesd. All these have led to more production and employment in about forty villages down the river upto 100 kms from
Hyderabad. The irrigation system is activated to the extent that the low level lands are irrigated through direct canals and the uplands through feeder tanks and lift irrigation system. III Until recently the Musi river was only sewage-sick. Alarmingly, today it also has become (industrial) effluents-sick. As long as as it was only sewage-sick the problem of pollution was not that serious as it is today. Because of these effluents and their colours self-purification of waste water (sewage) is not taking place. The wastes (effluents) released by the industrial units located in Jeedimetla, Nacharam and Kattendan join the Musi while the effluents of other industrial estates move towards the
Godavari river basin. Industrial estate-wise number of industrial units contributing objectionable effluents to
River are shown in Table 4. There are aiso units, other than those located in the above three estates, which release their effluents into Musi such as `Siris` which is located at L.B.Nagar on
road. Several other units belonging to the oldest industrial areas, listed out earlier, which are in the heart of the city also release their effluents into Musi. Table 4 Number of Industrial Units Releasing Effluents —————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————– S.No. Industrial Estate No.of Units Membership in CETP—————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————– 1. Jeedimetla 60 47 2. Nacharam 15 — 3. Kattedan 9 — Total 84 47 —————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————– Under the Water (Prevation and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974 it is compulsory for industries to provide adequate treatment for its effluents before they are released into natural courses. This Act, in the majority of the cases is ignored. It is said that the small scale industries contribute about 40 per cent of total industrial pollution load in the country. It is argued in the industrial circles that provision of Effluent Treatment Plant (ETP) ina small unit will be difficult and may not be financially viablie and therefore, a Common Effluent Treatment Plant (CETP) Is the solution. One such CETP is located in the Jeedimetla industrial estate and managed by industrialists themselves. But, as shown in Table 4 many of them did not take membership in the CETP.Out of 60 units only 47 are members. It is also said that many a times even the members do not get their effluents to CETP for treatement because they have to bear the treatment cost. Many industries are thus letting their effluents untreated into the natural courses. Some are discharging their concentrated effluents directly by tankers into Musi at two places, namely Nagole and Moosarambagh.
The Jeedimetla industrial estate alone discharges 55 million litres per day (mld) of domestic waste and 15 mld of industrial effluents daily, according to a survey made by the APPCB, leaving apart 182 other hazardous industries discharging a wast of about 34 thousand tonnes per year (Solid). As a result the quality of water in the river is dangerously discoloured. Table 5 reveals that the BOD levels are very high in the downstream of Amberpet where the Sewerage Treatment Plant (STP) is located. It indicates the extent of pollution and slow level of self purification process. A gradual reduction of pollution level is found only at Dattappaguda which is 98 km downstream of STP mentioned above, where BOD values have come down to 1.6 mg/1. According to standards prescribed by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) the Table 5 Water Quality of River Musi —————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————– Sl. Sampling Station Distance from PH2 COD3 BOD4 No. Chanderghat Bridge (Mg/I) (Mg/I) (in kms)—————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————– 1. Peerjadiguda 16 7.57 152 42.2 2. Korremul 24 8.17 72 21.2 3. Anantharam 30 7.95 57 15.07 4. Rudravally 42 7.72 48 13.71 5. Valigonda 77 7.86 39 10.83 6. Dattappaguda 98 7.82 8 1.6—————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–Source; Sampath Kumar, 1994.Note;1. This table describes water quality in terms of organic metals only 2. PH indicates neutrality of water in the range between 5.5, and 9.0. If PH exceeds 9, the land gets alcholined (salinity). If PH is below 5.5, the land becomes acidic. 3. COD indicates Chemical Oxygen Demand. 4. BOD indicates Biological Oxygen Demand. Both COD&BOD parameters are used to judge the oxygen levels of water.
BOD level after disinfecting should be 2 mg/1 for drinking prupose. It means, that the Musi water can be used for drinking only at 100 kms downstream of
Hyderabad, that too after disinfecting its water. The BOD content per litre of water in the river (mg/1) is far above the prescribed standards. For example, as shown in the Table 5, water is infected several times more than prescribed at ifferent places. It shows the extent of pollution of the river. On the one hand it is found that the sewage and the industrial effluents are either partly treated or not treated at all. On the other hand what is treated by the existing CETP,ETPs and STP is not adequate. A study on the treated effluents of Jeedimetla Effluents Treatment Plant makes interesting revelations. The study says that the finally disposed effluents possess a lot of colour which cannot be dissolved by the sun.
The disposed effluents of Jeedimetla ETP contain solids like sulphates, COD,BOD and lead etc. The values obtained are more than the permissible limits prescribed for industrial effluents for discharge into inland surface water. Therefore, the above study says, the effluents need further treatement before they are disposed off. The colour of the industrial effluents which occupy the river waters does not allow the sunlight to penetrate inside. As a result, the growth of the desirable aqutic biota necessary for self purification (reoxygenation) does not take place. Therefore, the water remains impure which is true of Musi. It contaminates groundwater, and hampers the use of `recreation facilites` and fishing which are indispensable to the vitality and well being of the community. Therefore, the study stresses on the need to remove the colours present the Musi waters. Musi water have become effluent-sick despite the presence of the Central and State Pollution Control Boards. As a result groundwater in the down-stream of the river is also contaminated. The borewells supplying drinking water are now lying unused as seen in a village called Peddagudem. Milk vendors of the villages who brind milk to the city go back from city with drinking water in their containers. People working in the fields, particularly women during the sowing season suffer from skin allergies. The animals also get loose motions frequently. Thus, the above list of morbidity can go to any length.
It may be concluded that water quality of the Musi river is dangerously decoloured by the inorganic metalas persent in the industrial effluents which are directly released into the river by the industries of
Hyderabad. There has been no adequate collective effort on the part of industries as well as the State Government in handling the problemof degradation of Musi river which in turn affects the downstream population. The polluted water of the Musi river may be now working as slow poison for the downstream agriculture and human and animal health. It may be remembered that the agricultural system under Musi support about 40 villages with a population which is perhaps more than the population directly dependent on industries in Hyderabad. Shall we then wait for a catastrophy to take place in the downstream of Musi river or shall we take up preventive measures to protect the river before its “life support systems get damaged beyond repairs”?
No wise government standing at the doorstep of the 21st century which has fallen in love with information technology can affored catastrophy to take place. Catastrophy here in the downstream of the Musi river means catastrophy in backward districts (Rangareddy and Nalgonda) of a backward region (Telangana) where fifty thousands acres of land is being provided an assured irrigation for two paddy crops in a year by its drain waters as discussed earlier. If the industrial affluents and the sewage sludge are not treated before they are released into the river the impending threat to human beings living on the banks of the Musi river and the dependent agriculture is not far away. If that is so, fifty thousand more acres of irrigated land will be lost and the list of existing land that is lost for cultivation in Telangana will expand at the cost of well-being of its people. Land under cultivation in the three regions of Andhra Pradesh at two points of time is presented in Table 6 which reveals that this is one more factor that is lending to regional imbalances that have emerged over time. Table 6 Region-Wise Land Under Cultivation in A.P—————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————– Year Andhra Rayalaseema Telangana Total—————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————– 1955-56 35,24,924 30,48,078 46,57,188 1,12,30190 1992-93 38,67,306 27,05,404 38,93,617 1,04,66,327 Difference +3,42,382 -3,42,674 -7,63,571 – 7,63,863 % (9.7) (11.24) (16.39) (6.8) —————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–Source; K.Jayashankar,1997 During about forty years after the formation of A.P.State, Telangana lost about 16.4 percent of its land under cultivation. In contrast to this during the same period the land under cultivation in Andhra region increased by 10 per cent. Surprisingly, the decline in land under cultivation in Telangana is higher than the decline in Rayalaseema (11 per cent) which got relatively more attention than Telangana. However, it is the Andhra region which has gained much over the other two regions because of the political and bureauratic advantage that it enjoys. Therefore, in the context of environment /ecological deterioration in particular and regional imbalances in general,the severity of the probiem warrants arrest of the pollution in Musi river to save the life support system before they get damaged beyond repairs. *Modified version of earlier paper I am thankful to Dr.Arun K.Patnaik, CESS,for useful comments. Notes and References 1.`Eighth Five Year Plan`,1992-97,Vol. II, Planning Commission, Government of
India. 2.`Musi Project Report` 1969; Department of Irrigation,Government A.P. 3.Discussions held with the officers concerned in the Offices of the Deputty Executive Engineer (Irrigation), Bhongir, and the Chief Engineer (Irrigation),Hyderabad helped in this regard, and the data on the anicut wise aycut have been collected from their files. 4.This discussion is based on different studies and newspaper reports. 5.Commissioner of Industries, Government of Andhra Pradesh,
Hyderabad. 6.`Musi Project report`,op.city. 7.Rao,V.S.1996:`Economics of Environment: Theory and Issues`, paper presented in XIV Annual Conference of the Andhra Pradesh Economic Association. 8.Ibid. 9.Based on the discussions held with Engineers of Pollution Control Board,Hyderabae and the data collected from their files. They get agitated and are uncomfortable in parting with the data because of the sensitivity of the problem 10.Rao,V.S.op.cit. 11.Kumar,S.,M.Tech.Dissertation,JNTU,1994,
Hyderabad. 12.Srikanth R.et.al.`Heavy Metals in Forge Grass`, IJEH, Vol.34,No.2,1992. 13.Ibid p-10. 14.`Eighth Five Year Plan`, 1992-97,op.cit.