Odisha Sun Times Bureau
New Delhi, Oct 13:
Odisha Congress MLAs, led by Leader of Opposition in Assembly Narasingha Mishra, today met President Pranab Mukherjee and requested him to intervene in the Mahanadi water sharing dispute between Odisha and Chhattisgarh.
According to Mishra, the leaders apprised the President about the dispute and argued that the one-sided construction by Chhattisgarh will affect the flow of water in the lower basin leading to acute shortage of water in the state.
Besides, the MLAs also argued that the Chhattisgarh government has violated rules by facilitating water to industries in the name supporting farmers and requested the President to intervene in the issue.
The delegation requested him to ask the Union Government to get the ongoing construction in Chhattisgarh halted until a solution is reached.
“Today, we requested the President to advise the Center to halt construction in Chhattisgarh. Further, we requested him to write to the Center asking it to form an interstate water dispute tribunal, if the states are not able to solve the dispute between themselves,” said Mishra speaking to reporters after meeting the President.
“The President has assured to look into the issue,” he added.
Biju Janata Dal, on the other hand, questioned the negligence of Congress over the issue while it was in power.
“The CWC allowed Chhattisgarh government to build barrages during the UPA tenure. If they really wanted to defend the interest of the state, they could have approached the-then Prime Minister and President,” said BJD Spokesperson Amar Prasad Satpathy while alleging that the Congress party is playing up the issue for political gains.
Odisha BJP Vice President Samir Mohanty, on the other hand, reiterated his party’s stand that the BJP led NDA Government at the Center is committed to ensure that Odisha doesn’t lose out on its share of water because of the constructions at the upper basin in Chhattisgarh.