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Mahanadi row: Tribunal directs Odisha to submit affidavit

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Bhubaneswar: The Mahanandi Water Disputes Tribunal today directed Odisha to submit an affidavit within two weeks.

Hearing an interim application filed by Odisha seeking stay order on construction of barrages over the Mahanadi River on upper catchment areas of Chhattisgarh, the Mahanadi tribunal sought clarifications from Odisha.

The application was deferred for further hearing on Feb 9 next year.

Sources said that a team of lawyers led by former Attorney General of India Mukul Rohatgi representing Odisha argued for around 2 and a half hours in the tribunal. During the argument, the court asked a few questions seeking clarifications on some issues. The court directed to submit an affidavit for clarification within two weeks so that it will be not pleadings. A further hearing on both primary and interim applications is scheduled on Feb 9, 2019.

Worth mentioning, both Odisha and neighbouring State Chhattisgarh are at loggerheads over sharing of Mahanadi River water. Odisha had moved the Supreme Court accusing Chhattisgarh of constructing barrages unilaterally. The Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation constituted Mahanadi Water Dispute Tribunal this year for adjudication of longstanding disputes between two States over sharing of Mahanadi river water.