Sangram To Save Maha

BJD Vice President Debi Prasad Mishra said that ‘Mahanadi Mahasangram’ campaign will kick start  from Sukhasoda village in Lakhanpur block of Jharsuguda district on May 16 to highlight Chhattisgarh Government’s alleged arbitrary constructions on river Mahanadi.

The campaign will simultaneously be held in Bargarh and several other districts on the same day in areas on the side of the River or its tributaries, which will be launched by Chief minister Naveen Patnaik..

Mr.Mishra said at a press conference after an all-party meeting on the issue here, that reduced flow in Mahanadi river due to construction in the upper end of the river has affected power generation in Odisha and the non-monsoon flow in the river due to construction of barrages and dams by Chhattisgarh has reduced by 78 per cent in May 2017.

Mr.Mishra said that a proposal Kalma-Chalo campaign was discussed at the meeting and a delegation is expected to go to Chhattisgarh by month end to assess the barrages there on Mahanadi.

“While the situation is serious, the Chhattisgarh Government is ignoring our legitimate demands and the Centre stands as a mute spectator to the whims and fancies of our neighbours,” the senior BJD leader added.

Odisha Pradesh Congress President Niranjan Patnaik compared Mahanadi’s situation to Hwang Ho River in China.

“We learn lessons only at the penultimate moment. It is high time all people of Odisha come together and fight to save Mahanadi,” he said.

The second phase of ‘Save Mahanadi’ campaign by the ruling BJD from Bargarh and Jharsuguda districts aims at exerting pressure on the Union Government to direct Chhattisgarh government to stop construction of barrages on Mahandi River.

The campaign will culminate in Paradip covering nearly 1600km.

Governing BJD during the campaign will make the people living in the districts on the side of the river aware about the adverse impact the barrages constructed by Chhattisgarh will cause on Odisha’s economy.
 
The BJD alleges that the NDA government at the Centre led by the BJP appears to be favouring the Chhattisgarh government which is also led by the party.

“Mahanadi is Odisha’s life line and about a sixth of its population depends on the river for their livelihood. We are in no mood to allow Chhattisgarh to continue construction activities on the river and there by impact flow of water to Odisha,” BJD MP Prasanna Acharya had recently asserted.

Students, youth, fishermen, women and leaders of social organizations will be involved in the campaign to strengthen Odisha’s cause, he added.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has said that the Mahanadi river bed is about to dry up due to non-release of upstream water by the Chhattisgarh Government.
 
“We had urged the Centre to constitute a tribunal to resolve the standoff, but our appeal fell on deaf ears. At last, the Supreme Court directed the Centre to form the tribunal. I urge all my party workers and colleagues to reach out to the people and convince them the ground reality,” he said while addressing the party MPs, MLAs and civic body chairpersons from 15 districts at a symposium on Mahanadi water dispute recently.

Meanwhile, Mahanadi Bachao Andolan (MBA) has demanded the Centre and Chhattisgarh government not to stop the flow of water to river Mahanadi from Kalama barrage till pronouncement of any verdict by the Mahanadi water disputes tribunal.

MBA Convenor Sudarshan Das has alleged that Kalma barrage has virtually killed River Mahanadi and the river considered the life line of Odisha will die a manmade death due to political reasons.


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