Congress Raises Polavaram Dam Issue in Chhattisgarh House

Congress Raises Polavaram Dam Issue in Chhattisgarh House - Sakshi Post

Raipur: Chhattisgarh Government on Thursday assured the Assembly that the State's interest would be protected over the construction of Polavaram dam in adjoining Andhra Pradesh after the Opposition said the mega project will displace a large number of people, mostly tribals, and submerge huge swathes of land.

The issue of Indira Sagar Polavaram dam - a multi- purpose irrigation project being built on the Godavari River inAndhra -- was vociferously raised by the Congress members, including those from tribal-dominated Bastar region, who grilled the BJP Government on the matter. Expelled Congress MLA Amit Jogi and Amarjeet Bhagat (Cong) raised the issueby moving a call attention motion and sought reply from Water Resources Minister Brijmohan Agrawal. Jogi and Bhagat outlined the decades-long history of the project and said it was an inter-state project of united Andhra Pradesh.

In 1980, the Godavari Tribunal gave go-ahead to the dam and said its water was to be shared between AP and Madhya Pradesh (Chhattisgarh was part of the State then). After the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh (which led to creation of Telangana) in 2014, the dam was classified as national project and the entire cost for its installation was to be borne by the Centre, they said.
Jogi said, the construction of Polavaram dam will lead to displacement of over 45,000 tribal and non-tribal people residing in Chhattisgarh, Odisha, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh (co-basin states). In Chhattisgarh, 17 villages and 85 hamlets in Sukma district alone will come under its catchment area. Besides, vast forest and mineral resources will come under the dam's submergence area, he said. Areas inhabited by Dorla and Koya, both protected tribes, will get submerged, putting their very survival at risk, Jogi maintained. Approximately 8,000 hectares of normal land, 40 villages in Konta tehsil (in Sukma) and 7,000 hectares of agricultural land will come under submergence area.

The Minister Agrawal, in his reply, allayed the fears of Opposition and said the State's interest will be protected.


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