This whole idea of Anakkara airport clearly is created with very minimal thought going into it. I’m neither an environmentalist, nor an expert on economic affairs and development. Now if the question is “How can you give your opinion if you are not an expert”, my answer will be, “That.s called common sense” . Here are few quick, simple facts why an airport at Anakkara or for that matter any such geographies in the Western Ghats is an airhead’s idea..
- Anakkara is situated on the Western Ghats, an area considered as one of the most eco-sensitive areas of the country
- Anakkara has two domestic/international airports within 200Kms distance (Kochi, Madurai)
- Acres of paddy fields are going to be destroyed for the airport construction, and its just commonsense that can tell you what is the impact of destroying food crops
- KSIDC(Kerala State Industrial Development Corporation) who promotes the airport claims to make Idukki like “Davos” In Switzerland with the airport. There is no airports in Davos firstly, secondly the nearest airport Zurich is about 160 Kms from Davos. Shows how poor ground work has been done by the authorities towards this matter.
- Historically, authorities in Kerala are pathetic in compensating families re-located for developmental purpose,(Nedumbassery airport is the best example). Poor people who are going to be re-located for this project are going to create a refugee situation
- Anakkara at a height of 3000ft above sea level gets very heavy rain-fall during monsoon, turns foggy during winter, making air traffic movement impossible for many months
- Munnar, one of the most popular tourist destinations claimed to be benefiting from this airport is about 100Kms away from Anakkara and the time taken to reach is same as that from Kochi / Madurai airports
- Destroying “Chengurundan Hills”, the highest point of Anakkara as part of the airport project is going to have very serious impacts on the environment, we have live examples like Kudremukh in Karnataka in front of us
In summary, this whole idea seems to be created by few people with some clear hidden agenda, looks like so far they managed to succeed in convincing the local authorities, people in the village who are not directly affected etc on the high returns they are getting, but my advice to people of Anakkara would be that, by joining these people you are simply cutting the branch on which you are sitting. This will become yet another economically nonviable airport, by the way Airport Authority of India already spends Rs. 30+ crores to maintain about 31 non-operational airports in this country, Anakkara will be just another one in that list. Tourists who would want visit places like Anakkara would want to see it as-is, once changed to a dirty town-ship, you are going to miss those genuine visitors to Anakkara. We have live examples of almost all the hill stations in India for the impacts of irresponsible tourism promotion.