|Kummanam Rajashekharan, celebrating with Prasadam from the Temple, the NGT' s decision|
Sunday, 8 June 2014
Just a quick update on my earlier post in January of this year - Mad About an Airport and the controversy in Kerala about the plan to construct a stupid airport amidst cast acres and acres of paddy fields,destruction of wetlands in the heritage town of Aranmula.
In an era of rapid loss of natural resources, accelerated deforestation and an insatiable need for high speed everything, I feel bouyant that last week, the Chennai bench of the National Green Tribunal revoked the environmental clearance for the proposed Aranmula Airport project. The Aranmula Heritage Village Action Council chief patron Kummanam Rajashekharan, a senior Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh pracharak has been leading the struggle against the airport in 2012 .
For those who have not read my earlier post, the Kerala government approved 2,000 acres in Aranmula for a totally unnecessary airport. Aranmula , a temple town known for its paddy fields, deep tradition and culture ,its boat race and for the unique Aanmula glass- known as kannadi, a rare handmade metal-alloy mirror, would loose 700 acres of paddy fields, its wetlands , have a negative ecological impact. For the airstrip to be operational the mast of the temple would have to be lowered and the entrance door of the temple changed. So rich and deep is its cultural heritage that UNESCO has declared it a heritage zone.
So when the southern Bench of the National Green Tribunal (NGT), on May 29th, cancelled the environmental clearance given to the controversial international airport project in Kerala, there was much rejoicing – full credit to the people of Aranmula and the man who led the struggle.
Here is the man and these are his stories