India Intelligence Report

SC Orders Dismantling Fish Tanks in AP


The Supreme Court (SC) has ordered the Andhra Pradesh (AP) to destroy fish tanks created in the Kolleru Lake by politically connected individuals that threaten the ecosystem of the large wet lands and the livelihood of those who live around it. This is yet another incident where the AP Chief Minister Y.S.R. Reddy has demonstrated incapability to understand environmental and development issues. He had previously provided free power to farmers who used it to suck out millions of years of underwater storage to get one water-intensive crop. Having run the state electricity board to near bankruptcy, he was forced to abandon his thoughtless scheme by the Federal Government. 

Kolleru Lake is one of the largest shallow water lakes in Asia lying between the alluvial plains of Krishna and Godavari Rivers and serves as a natural flood balancing reservoir system for the two Rivers by absorbing excess water through 67 inflow channels and drains. The lake is formed due to a natural geographical formation and supports a wide variety of flora and fauna and sustains millions who live around it.


Reddy had encouraged “development” in that area to boost fish production threatening the livelihood of the fishermen in the area as also increased food runoffs into the water system from commercial aquaculture farms. The SC verdict delivered a slap to Reddy saying that any development of the present should not compromise the capability of future generations to sustain their livelihood. This, they lectured AP, is “sustainable development.” 

The SC demanded that the state not only dismantle all the fish farms illegally and thoughtlessly created but also arrest the transportation of inputs for these farms which are usually done in motorized boats that spew oil. However, the court wanted to ensure that fishing in traditional form that does not adversely affect the environment is not stopped with this order. 

Increasingly, the youth are detached from their traditional practices of agriculture and sustenance and absorbing trash from Indian and Hollywood movies that are depicted as “cool.” In a recent case in Karnataka, some politically connected youth thought it was more effective to catch fish using dynamites and mimicked a Hollywood movie depicting a deranged socially mal-adjusted Australian “wildlife strongman” catching fish using similar means and getting away with it.