Committee report on illegal shrimp farming in Nellore district, Andhra Pradesh, 10/06/2021

Committee report in compliance to the National Green Tribunal order on illegal shrimp farms in Pittivanipalli, Padarthivari Kandriga and Ranganathapuram village of Chittamur mandal, Nellore district, Andhra Pradesh.

The report mentioned that there are 167 farmers cultivating shrimp farming in 289 aqua ponds in Pittivanipalli, Padarthivari Kandriga and Ranganathapuram village. Regarding the action on the remaining un-demolished unauthorized ponds, the report said that the Coastal Aquaculture Authority is authorized for initiating action as per Coastal Aquaculture Authority Act, 2005.

The water samples collected by the Andhra Pradesh Pollution Control Board indicated the presence of saline water in freshwater bodies. However, the aquaculture activity does not come under the consent purview  of the APPCB and the aqua farmers need not obtain any permission from the APPCB - they need to obtain registration from the Fisheries Department and Coastal Aquaculture Authority depending upon the aqua farm location.

Aquaculture requires saline water and agricultural paddy fields require sweet water. The coexistence of both needs proper planning for freshwater and wastewater management. The wastewater discharge from the aquaculture must not be allowed into the freshwater canals/tanks and there should be a dedicated drain/ pipeline to discharge saline water from the aqua ponds to the Upputeru Kaluva in case of allowing aquaculture in the area. If it is not feasible, saltwater aquaculture has to be stopped in the area.

Necessary measures should be taken to reclaim the agricultural lands and the cost of reclaiming should be collected from the responsible shrimp cultivators, the report of June 10, 2021 said. 

The report recommended the following actions to be taken immediately:
1. Demolish all unauthorized shrimp ponds by the Coastal Aquaculture Authorities as per CAA Act, 2005.
2.To remove all illegal electrical connections and electrical polls by the electrical department
3.Encroachments should be removed immediately by revenue department
4.Immediate steps to be taken for cultivation of paddy crops in the affected area by the agricultural department.