Odisha Sun Times Bureau
New Delhi, July 15:
Despite protests in Telangana and Odisha, the Parliament on Monday passed a bill in support of the multi-purpose Polavaram project in Andhra Pradesh, with the Union government assuring of all possible steps for the rehabilitation and resettlement of the affected people.
The Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation (Amendment) Bill, passed by Lok Sabha last week, was approved by Rajya Sabha by a voice vote on Monday, after a debate during which Congress sought to take credit for bringing the amendments.
Congress member and former Union Minister Jairam Ramesh said while it was not easy to implement the project, it was good to find the NDA government taking it forward. This reflected the tradition of healthy democratic politics in the country, he said.
The project involves the relocation of about 50,000 families especially in Khammam, East Godavari and West Godavari districts in Andhra Pradesh, besides roughly 2,000 families in Odisha and Chhattisgarh.
Union Home minister Rajnath Singh, while replying to the debate on the issue in Rajya Sabha, claimed the Central government has not violated any constitutional norm while bringing the bill.
Polavaram is a Central project and the government will address the rehabilitation and resettlement issue if any, he said, while seeking to allay the concerns of the members with regard to the possible submergence of certain areas in Odisha and Chhattisgarh.