Saturday, March 29, 2008

A journey up the Godavari

On the 22nd of March we did a day long boat journey up the River Godavari - from just downstream of the site of the Polavaram Dam to about 100 kms up, to the small village of Koeda. The roughly six hour voyage was a journey into what will soon cease to be if the dam that will displace more than 2,00,000 people, and drown almost 30,000 acres of agricultural land along with some fine forests including those of the Papikonda Wildlife Sanctuary is to finally come up.
Here are some pictures from that journey, from a landscape that is rich, varied and does not deserve to be destroyed!

Just a little downstream of the dam site, fishing communities carry on with their traditional livelihood activities

We were caught in an unseasonal storm - the skies darkened up and a gust of wind blew up the brown sand from the sandbars in the river bed, creating colours, images and memories of haunting beauty

Innumerable stands of toddy palm dot the riverside landscape that is visible from the boat

Village youth from the hamlet of Parentapalli stand by the giant tamarind tree, watching the Godavari go peacefully by

The mountains of the Papikonda Mountain range that the Godavari drains and which will be submerged are clothed by extremely rich and diverse forests.

Ironically, we were told, that tourists like us wanting to take this boat ride had increased significantly in recent months. The reason? Word has gone around that this will all be submerged when the dam comes up and many want to see what it is that is going to be lost forever.


7 comments:

ruhaan said...

Landscapes are great and so much identical to Narmada.....including the horrible fact of SUBMERGENCE.....

cyberdiva said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
cyberdiva said...

What are the parts that will be submerged?

Ramanujam said...

Breathtakingly beautiful! Deeply saddening that if the powers-that-be have their way, all these will be no more...

Murali said...

Thank you for this fantastic record. And to think that I could have gone all with you....sigh! I missed a great trip!

Junuka said...

Pankaj!
this is too fantastic..
surrounded by horror...though.
thanks for this.

Dhooni said...

Tragic Beauty!