Sea water not polluted in E Godavari dist: Minister

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Hyderabad, Mar 5 (UNI) Andhra Pradesh Environment, Science and Technology Minister S Vijayarama Raju today denied that the activities of ONGC and Reliance in East Godavari district has polluted sea water and decreased production of fish and other aqua products.

Replying to a question raised by Mr Gidugu Rudra Raju (Cong) in the Legislative Council, the Minister said the movement of fishermen was only restricted near rigs for safety concerns. There was a possibility of sea water getting polluted if there was any oil spillage. However, only two incidents of oil spillage were reported during the last five years, he pointed out.

He said the Andhra Pradesh Pollution Control Board and the Coast Guard were regularly monitoring oil and gas exploration works to prevent and control marine pollution due to oil spills and other activities of such industries.

Mr Raju said the Kakinada Deputy Director of Fisheries informed that Reliance Industries had paid compensation to 1,653 affected fishermen of 37 villages while laying a pipeline in river Godavari at the rate of Rs 6,000 per eligible country craft per month, as the laying of pipeline and dredging at the river mouth was obstructing the movement of fishing crafts.

He said the company had been paying the compensation of Rs 99.18 lakh per month from October last year and promised to pay it for six months or till the pipeline was laid.

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