Orissa moves court against Andhra’s new irrigation project

BHUBANESWAR - Orissa has filed a suit in the Supreme Court seeking suspension of work of a mega irrigation project by neighbouring Andhra Pradesh, an official said Thursday.

The state government has filed an injunction suit in the Supreme Court Wednesday seeking immediate suspension of work of Polavaram project, a senior official of the state water resources department told IANS.

The petition was filed because work is continuing by Andhra Pradesh government despite repeated objections by the Orissa government, the official said.

The controversial Rs.115 billion (Rs.10,150-crore) Indira Sagar Polavaram multipurpose irrigation project would be built on river Godavari in Andhra Pradesh.

The Andhra government has claimed that the project after completion will provide drinking water to 2.85 million people, produce 960 MW of power and give industry 23.5 thousand million cubic feet of water.

The project first envisioned by the British administration in 1941 has, however, been facing opposition since decades from local residents who fear displacement, as well as from the states of Orissa and Chhattisgarh.

After completion of the project, in case of floods, the back water of the river Godavari will flow to its tributaries Saberi and Sileru in Orissa and Chhattisgarh and submerge dozens of bordering villages, the Orissa official said.

The Andhra government has said it will put some embankments on the river but that is not the solution, he said.

‘No proper study was made to know the amount of damage it will cause in Orissa,’ he said.


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