HYDERABAD – More than 30,000 dead fish washing up on the shores of Rampally lake near Hyderabad in central India prompted an angry response from environmental activists, who claim it shows the area’s alarming pollution levels.

The mass death follows similar incidents last week in which a total of 60,000 fish were found dead in the waters of Shamirpet lake and Medchal lake on the outskirts of the city.

Local officials claim the fish succumbed to a bacterial infection caused by high temperatures – but environmental activists insist responsibility lies with domestic and industrial polluters.

Speaking to the Times of India, environmental expert Prof K Purushotham Reddy said: “Lakes and [water] tanks around city are becoming a deadly mix of domestic sewage, municipal waste and hazardous waste dumped irresponsibly by industries. When it rains, all this flows into lakes and tanks.”

“Since these wastes contain all kinds of acids, plastics and chemicals, the subsequent reactions reduce the level of dissolved oxygen in water which makes it impossible for fish to survive.”