PORVORIM: The Goa Legislative Assembly discussed and debated at length the recent development of the Central Water Commission (CWC) granting approval to Karnataka’s Detailed Project Report (DPR) for the Kalsa-Bhandura project for Mhadei diversion.
The House unanimously resolved to demand the withdrawal of approval to the Detailed Project Report submitted by Karnataka and also demanded not to allow out-of-basin diversion of Mhadei water.
Water Management Authority. The resolution will be sent to the centre with a request to act on the same at the earliest. All opposition MLAs repeatedly demanded that Chief Minister should specify the timeframe for the withdrawal of approval for DPR. However, in reply to their demands, CM refused to give any commitment as regards the time frame by which DPR would be withdrawn. “I can’t give a specific timeframe for DPR approval withdrawal, but it will be done at the earliest,” he said. While speaking on the resolution, CM admitted that Karnataka has already diverted water at Haltara and Kalasa rivulets. He said that the state govt has strongly objected to any diversion of water from the Mhadei basin into Karnataka. He further said that in order to utilise water from the Mhadei river, the construction of 6 dams is in the pipeline. CM appealed to the opposition to come together unitedly, keeping aside political differences to fight for the existence of Mhadei.
The resolution will be sent to the centre with a request to act on the same at the earliest.
Chief Minister Pramod Sawant also said that a House committee under WRD minister Subhash Shirodkar would be formed on the Mhadei water diversion issue.
Sawant was replying to the discussion on Mhadei Issue.
“House committee under WRD minister Subhash Shirodkar will be formed on the Mhadei water diversion issue, including legal and environmental experts and will also take inputs of opposition,” said CM Sawant.
Sawant informed that the committee includes Advocate Carlos Ferreira, Vijai Sardesai, Capt Venzy Viegas, Viresh Borkar, Dr Chandrakant Shetye, Alex Reginaldo, Dr Deviya Rane, Jit Arolkar, Michael Lobo, Ganesh Gaonkar and Premendra Sheet.
He further said that they have demanded that the office of Mhadei Water Management Authority should be in Panaji.
“With this, we can regularly ask for their reports and justice. We will certainly win the case,” he added.
Sawant further said that the government’s legal team is strong, and we monitor all the happenings in the court.
“We have demanded to withdraw DPR, Mhadei Water Management Authority formation,” he added.
The Chief Minister said that he met Union Home Minister Amit Shah and urged for the immediate constitution of a water management authority to resolve the issue of diversion of the Mhadei river water.
“Home Minister Amit Shah has assured that injustice will not be done Goa on the Mhadei issue,” informed Sawant
CM Sawant said that the government has also objected to the Central Water Commission’s decision to sanction the Detailed Project Report (DPR) submitted by Karnataka to construct two dams on the Mhadei river.
Opposition demands a specific timeframe from Chief Minister on DPR withdrawal.
Opposition leader Yuri Alemao alleged that it looks as though the sole objective of approval of DPR was appeasement of the voters of Karnataka in view of the ensuing Karnataka elections. He asked CM to give a time frame within which the issue would be resolved. Congress MLA Carlos Alvares Ferreira called for the need to stand in unison over the Mhadei issue instead of indulging in political blame games.
RGs Viresh Borkar marshalled
out of the House
RGP MLA Viresh Borkar rushed to the well of the House after his mike was muted while he was trying to read a letter sent by his party to PM Modi. He was marshalled out of the House.
Venzy demands notifying
of Mhadei Tiger Reserve
AAP MLA Venzy Viegas demanded notifying forested areas of Mhadei Wildlife Sanctuary, excluding human settlement, agriculture and horticulture areas as Mhadei Tiger Reserve to make Goa’s case strong. He also called for research by scientists on the impact of the diversion of Mhadei on Goa.
Build 59 check dams,
bandhras on Mhadei: Vijai
Goa Forward MLA Vijai Sardesai and Quepem MLA Alton D’costa suggested that proposed 59 check dams and bandharas be constructed in Goa within 6 months.
Let all 40 MLAs resign, create a constitutional
crisis if DPR not withdrawn: Congress
Congress MLAs demanded that govt should ask the centre to stop giving any more approvals to the project, start work of Bandharas on river Mhadei, declare the Mhadei Wildlife Sanctuary as Tiger Reserve and that all 40 MLAs should resign and create a constitutional crisis if the centre refuses to withdraw DPR within 15 days.
House Committee formed to give suggestions
to govt on Mhadei diversion issue
Goa Legislative Assembly constituted a House Committee under WRD minister Subhash Shirodkar to study and follow up with various aspects of the Mhadei diversion issue.
Following are the members – Carlos Alvares Ferreira, Vijai Sardesai, Venzy Viegas, Viresh Borkar, Dr Chandrakant Shetye, Alex Reginald, Dr Divya Rane, Dr Ganesh Gaonkar, Premendra Shet, Jeet Arolkar and Michael Lobo.
(inputs from Digital Goa)