UPDATE: Collector Pravin Kumar visited Rushikonda Beach yesterday and said a protection wall will be put up soon to prevent further erosion of the beach. He said that plans for beautifying the beach will soon be put into place with the help of Regional Director of Tourism, R Sreeramulu and Superintendent Engineer of GVMC, Chandraiah. An amphitheater and approach road by the beach are also in the works. The National Institute of Oceanography is in the meanwhile looking for a permanent solution for the erosion.
Coastal erosion has been an ongoing issue in Visakhapatnam in the recent past. The coastline has on an irregular basis, slowly been wearing away of it’s sand. The district administration closed down access to Rushikonda beach yesterday morning. Curious people still flocked to the beach to witness the erosion but the marine police have been strict about not letting people in. The Vizag beach has eroded on and off since 2012 with larger than normal waves hitting the beach and affecting it. The RK Beach underwent erosion after Hudhud. The energetic waves that caused the erosion are said to be travelling here all the way from Antarctica. While it is all well and fine to ban tourists from the beach for their safety, the consequence happens to effect tourism and the shopkeepers who make their living by the beach.
Visakhapatnam Port Trust Chairman MT Krishna Babu is heading the committee set up by Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu to study the issue. The World Bank has now joined the cause by agreeing to sanction Rs 80-100 crore to the government to help tackle the issue. In the past, the Visakhapatnam Port had spent Rs 13 crore to evacuate sand from near Dolphin’s Nose and pumped it into the eroded beaches with the help of a dredger from the Dredging Corporation of India. The beach has been predicted to be further damaged due to swell waves in October. The committee is waiting approval from the state to bring on-board Deltares, an international institute specialising in water and sub-surface studies.