The arguments of the people opposing Athirapally dam are totally unexceptionable. The rich biodiversity of the area cannot be bartered away for paltry megawatts of electricity. The indigenous people of the area also stand to lose considerably.
The bold stand taken by Jairam Rameshji against the dam has endeared him to the green brigade of Kerala. At the same time we also have to step in to the shoes of the electricity people and have a look at the entire event from their perspective also. Not all of them are anti-environmentalists. Their job is to produce and distribute electricity. In their eyes there is nothing to beat hydropower when it comes to non polluting source of electricity production. It also is the cheapest source of electicity.
So how do we come to a modus Vivendi? If Kerala is denied the right to produce hydro electricity then the state will have to go in for very expensive thermal alternative. They will have to either produce it or buy it from outside.
The best course for the centre would be to subsidize the difference between hydro power and thermal power and ensure uninterrupted power for the state. This way the forest is saved and the electricity people also would be a happy lot. The green bucks that bridge the gap between hydro and thermal power cost would be an incentive for the state to protect the forest.
So Jairam Rameshji here is an opportunity for you to break new ground and as the saying goes ,kill two birds with one shot.