When Uttara Kannada, a highly neglected district talks:
Hi, I am Uttara Kannada, one of the biggest districts of Karnataka, situated at the west of the state towards Arabian Sea. Karwar is the district head quarters which is south to Goa. I am essentially made up of the coastal belt at west, western forests in the middle inner lees rainy regions at east. I was one among a few districts of the country which has contributed to the Indian Freedom Movement. Ankola is well known for its contribution in non-cooperative movements. My beauty was once praised by Rabindranath Tagore when he visited Karwar.
I am very rich in natural resources. A umber of water falls, valleys, rivers, beaches are my assets. My people were spending happy life along with nature. Representatives of people and the governments of the state and the country felt jealous by looking at happiness that I was providing to my people. The State asked me to sacrifice something for the state. I scarified the beautiful forests of Supa for hydraulic power generation units. But the state was not satisfied it asked for some more nature of mine to be destroyed. Now this was the term of riverside of Gangavali. I thought it was my pleasure to help the state.
The government of India was observing me. It understood it can take anything from me in the name of development. It kept a nuclear bomb in my heart- in the middle of western forests- Kaiga. It made me to live with fear of death forever. Then it was the issue of national security. I never thought they could destroy the beauty of the coastal line. But they did it in the name of Sea Bird, a Naval Base. The people of the coastal regions lost their business- fishery. The people who gave space for refugees from Tibet became refugees in their own land.
My desires were very small. A train service from Hubli to Ankola. They told they can’t destroy more forests for this reason. Soon they cut down thousands of evergreen trees for electric line from Jogfalls to Hubli. They did it again in the name of betterment of state. But a railway was in the list of useful projects for the state.
Most of the power demand is answered by the power stations here along the rivers of Kali, Bedti, Sharavati and Kaiga atomic power stations. I didn’t ask for free electric power to all the houses here. I asked uninterrupted power supply to all the villages. Even today there is more load-shedding than any other place of Karnataka. There are villages without electric lines. State government owned electric board workers takes a week to repair the lines whenever there is a fault. But the state is busy in discussing establishing a thermal power plant at Tadri.
I’m proud of my children that are so intelligent. My name comes within top 5 in the list of examination results- 10th, 12th or CET. They asked for a medical college- there is no medical college here. They asked for a good engineering college. They are still made to go to Bangalore for higher studies. They asked for a university. Government did not hear in the noise of power generation stations. They requested for timely bus service to go to college from remote villages. The second hand buses which are abandoned in Bangalore were sent here.
There is a limit to my patience. State has to understand there is a limit to my tolerance. It is better if I’m answered before it goes to its extreme.