Financial Daily from THE HINDU group of publications
Friday, Jan 21, 2005
Industry & Economy
Karan Singh warns against river-linking
Former Union Minister Dr Karan Singh having a word with the GITAM President, Mr M.V.V.S. Murthy, at the inauguration of the silver jubilee celebrations of Gandhi Institute of Technology and Management in Visakhapatnam on Thursday. Actress and Lok Sabha member Jayaprada looks on. - K.R. Deepak
Visakhapatnam , Jan. 20
THE grand plan to link the rivers in the country may not be desirable, as it is fraught with grave environmental hazards besides the huge cost involved, according to Dr Karan Singh, former Union Minister and member of the Rajya Sabha.
He was speaking at the inaugural function to mark the silver jubilee year of the Gandhi Institute of Technology and Management (GITAM) at Rushikonda here on Thursday.
``I know our President, Dr Kalam, is in favour of it and there are many others like him who think it's a sound proposal. I am afraid, however, that the ecological consequences of the project as well as the human suffering caused by the large-scale displacement will be too much. We should not rush into it,'' he said.
``The large reservoirs in the country, such as the Tehri and Bakra, are getting silted. I am against such mega, monstrous projects. Having worked in the environment movement, I am aware of the ecological costs,'' he said.
In a similar vein, while expressing happiness over the industrial development taking place in Visakhapatnam, he said the beaches and the natural beauty should not be spoilt.
Complimenting Mr M.V.V.S Murthy, GITAM President, for developing it into a fine educational complex, he said it was almost a mini university. He advised the management and technical students of the institute to understand the needs of rural India and serve the rural masses instead of getting caught up in the "cannibalistic capitalism of the west''.
He later released a book written by Mr Murthy on the implementation of Jawahar Rojgar Yojana.
Cine actress-turned politician, Ms Jayaprada, who currently represents Rampur constituency (Uttar Pradesh) in the Lok Sabha, said GITAM was one of the finest educational institutes in the country. She promised all help to the institution.
Mr Murthy recounted the 25-year-old history of the institute and said he and the faculty would strive to make it one of the best in the country. "Ours is the first engineering college in the State to have achieved autonomy,'' he said.
Dr Y. Lakshmi Prasad and several other academics spoke on the occasion.
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