Air pollution forcing many residents to shift from Prasad Gardens
This is the place where a mosque in one corner of the street and a Ram temple in another end coexist.
Sandwiched between Kobbari Thota and Velampeta, Prasad Gardens has a substantial number of slum dwellers and middle class families who have been living together for decades. The urban settlement was once known for its lush vegetation and pastureland. Over the years, it has transformed into a semi-residential area where 50 per cent of the place has become a hub for wholesale trade. From imitation jewellery to school bags and cosmetics, many items can be bought at affordable prices. Decades ago, the geography of the colony seems to be entirely different. “Earlier, Prasad Gardens formed part of the dead end of the port city and was blanketed with lush greenery. Today, it has turned into the most polluted place. Air pollution is one of the main reasons that forced many residents to move away from the locality,’ says Konda Bheema Lingeswara Rao, a businessman of Prasad Gardens. Residing in the vicinity of Visakhapatnam Port, inhabitants say they have been experiencing a range of skin diseases, respiratory problems, stomach ailments and eye infection.
Another major problem that the low-lying area has been facing is inundation. “Prasad Gardens will be one of the first rain-affected areas in the city. It will be an arduous task to stop the flood water entering the houses every time it rains. Desilting the Ferry Canal in the Port area will help solve the inundation problem to a large extent as it enables free flow of water,” says K. Rajiv Gandhi, resident of Prasad Gardens.
A few houses and a temple have been built haphazardly on the drains, blocking the flow of sewage and compounding the colony’s sanitation problems.
Zone III Commissioner V. Chakradhar; Mobile No: 9848889701; Helpdesk No: 0891-2707299.