No to Big Dams like Narmada Dam aka Sardar Sarovar Project
Aamir Khan may or may not be seeking additional publicity for the dwindling ticket sales of Rang de Basanti - but atleast he has his heart in the right place by supporting a just cause like Narmada Bachao Andolan instead of pulling silly publicity stunts like anchoring TV news channels etc.
You don't find much about the demerits of large dams like the Sardar Sarovar Project in newspapers or the internet but that does not mean they do not exist. The press is largely dependant on the government and newsagencies for thier information. As most of them are controlled by big business houses is is pretty easy to spread lies or give incomplete information. The media can't exist without thier ads. eg. in TOI today, I saw a one page ad supporting the Sardar Sarovar Project with the photos of Ambani brothers, Birlas, and heads of Essar, Aravind Mills, Nirma, Torrent, Adani, Cadila, Zydus, L&T and Kotak Mahindra - all Gujaratis ( Marwaris & Sindhis). These are the people who subvert public opinion, lobby the government and the media to continue with an economically unfeasible project just cause they have some stake in its constuction - like providing cement, stones etc. They are only bothered about how much profit they will make or loose on the dam.
Myths perpetuated by those Damn lying builders -
Narmada Dam Lie No. 1. - Tribals are Rehabilitated - The creation of reservoirs leads to lakhs of kilometeres of fertile land near the river being flooded. There is talk about giving alternative land to the poor tribals but in reality either infertile land is given, or land already belonging to someone else or land really far away. Officials in charge of distributing land demand bribes and gifts from tribals and harass them.
Narmada Dam Lie No. 2. - We are growing trees to replace the ones we cut down, we are creating bird sanctuaries - In reality the freshwater ecosystem and forests are also destroyed. Lots of animal, birds, fish and plant species are threatened and face extinction. Before a reservoir is flooded people can be moved, but who will move those lakhs of animals and wild plants that habitate that area. The reservoir will be filled with drowned dead animals leading to the spread of water borne diseases. Animals serve a specific purpose in the food chain and thier destruction leads to pollution and diseases like plague etc. Who told them to spend crores on planting trees unsuitable to the natural environment which died soon after ?? Why would you destroy a natural ecosystem and plant a fake water-bird habitat in its place ??
Narmada Dam Lie No. 3. - Dams reduce floods - Dams are a man made construction and can break anytime !! There is no guarantee of the quality of construction ( shoddy materials have been most probably used ). Narmada Area is an earthquake prone area - remember the Gujrat quake ?? In case the dam breaks there will be unparalled flooding and destruction like in New Orleans, America. Also flash floods and silting is caused when large amount of water is released by the dam.
Narmada Dam Lie No. 4. - There will be plenty of Drinking water - Dams lead to waterlogging and increased salination of land. Salt water affects drinking water leading to diseases. No crops can be grown on saline lands, and use of fertilisers and pesticides to lessen the saline effect proves costly and harmful. There are cheaper ways that ensure a better supply of water like traditional rainwater harvesting, construction of large tanks and borewells, recharging wells and planting of trees.
Narmada Dam Lie No. 5. - Cheap Electicity for farmers/businesses - In reality Hydro electricity from the dam will be available only in 2021 to the people. This is economically unviable because of the negative cost benefit ratio. It would be cheaper to use thermal power or renewable sources like solar or wind energy that is free and abundant in India and easy to set up.
Narmada Dam Lie No. 6. - Greening of lands - why do you forcefully want farmers to grow cash crops for export like sugarcane, sun flowers, groundnuts etc. that pushes up the cost of living in these areas ?? As farmers stop growing thier natural dry crops like bajra and jowar, they will starve and end up committing suicide like the other poor that are ignored in India.
Just because tribals don't have the money that talks or a PR firm to articulate and publicise thier POV in English/ Hindi does not mean that they are blockages in the progress of the nation. Why should an uneducated majority in Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh suffer for the profits of a few Kanjoos Marwari businessmen ?? Narendra Modi as usual is 'Bhadka-ing' innocent Gujratis to take up violence. EVERY SCHOOL KID LEARNS ABOUT THE HARM BIG DAMS CAUSE IN THIER GEOGRAPHY TEXTBOOKS, THEN WHY SHOULD IT TAKE THE GOVERNMENT SO LONG TO CUT ITS LOSSES AND MOVE AHEAD BY STOPPING THE NARMADA DAM PROJECT NOW ??