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Stop Mhadei tributary work immediately Goa to K’taka

Stop Mhadei tributary work immediately Goa to K’taka

12 Jan 2018 No comment 28 hits

Keri/Panaji: Chief minister Manohar Parrikar instructed the chief secretary on Friday to ask the Karnataka government to immediately stop the work to block the water flow to Goa from the Mhadei tributary. "...they have to stop it immediately," Parrikar told REPORTERS.
Additional solicitor general of India Atmaram Nadkarni, who heads Goa's legal team on the Mhadei issue, also called for immediate action from the state government and said the state should file an application before the Mhadei water disputes tribunal.

The Goa government, which rushed a team on a fact-finding mission to Karnataka after REPORTERS exclusively front-paged the report, 'Karnataka blocks Mhadei tributary, Surla waterfalls turn into trickle', found what this paper had reported on Friday—the work was in full swing and water of the Kalsa canal had been blocked by creating earthen embankments.

On Friday, REPORTERS had pointed out how for the first time, Karnataka had raised mud embankments on the Mhadei tributary drastically reducing water levels in the Barazan and Ladkecho waterfalls in Surla village.

"Our team visited Kankumbi and collected required evidences of ongoing work of Kalsa. I have already instructed our officials in Delhi to bring the matter to the notice of the senior counsel for Goa before Mhadei water disputes tribunal, Atmaram Nadkarni. Our preparation for finalising the draft of written submissions to be submitted on January 15 is also in progress," water resources department chief engineer Sandeep Nadkarni said.

Water resources minister Vinod Palyekar later held a meeting with advocate general Dattaprasad Lawande, north Goa district collector Nila Mohanan and WRD officials. "I have asked the collector to write to their (Belagavi) collector to stop the work," he said.

Nadkarni, who as advocate general of Goa three years ago had spoken to collectors of Belagavi and Khanapur and stopped planned demolition of gauge block, also told the chief minister that the Belagavi collector should be asked to stop work as it was in violation of the court order, sources said.

Palyekar, who also held a meeting with the chief minister, said he would be visiting the site along with the chief engineer and other senior officials from his department on Saturday morning.

Aamhi Goynkar, the recently formed organisation to create awareness against diversion of water, expressed dismay over the development in Kankumbi.

"We are shocked by the reported work being undertaken by Karnataka. It's clear that they were provoked by the letter sent by chief minister Manohar Parrikar to former Karnataka chief minister and BJP state chief B S Yeddyurappa," alleged convener S N Joshi.

He warned that they would launch an agitation if the state government failed to stop the ongoing work. He alleged Goa is a victim of the kind of politics BJP is playing to come back to office in Karnataka.

Kiran Gaude, a member of Maharashtra Ekikaran Samiti from Kankumbi, told REPORTERS, "Though Karnataka had admitted before the high court of Karnataka in February 2013 that the entire project will be executed only after the clearance from ministry of environment and forest as required under the Forest Conservation Act and also from the National Board for Wildlife, it is going ahead in completing work of Kalsa project in Kankumbi."

He said the villagers were facing a host of problems and the ground water table in Kankumbi has been badly affected. "The officials of Karnataka Neeravari Nigam Ltd have continued work, violating environmental laws. Karnataka has deployed necessary machinery to complete the work of the project and to block the natural flow of water of the Kalsa nullah going in the direction of Goa," he said.

Karnataka's move to block the water flow to Goa comes at a time when the Mhadei water sharing controversy has reached a crescendo after Parrikar last month wrote a letter to Yeddyurappa that the state was ready to consider supply of drinking water from the Mhadei on "humanitarian grounds".

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Source: Stop Mhadei tributary work immediately Goa to K’taka

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