Madhya Pradesh’s threat to stop supply of Narmada water to Gujarat ‘childish, unfortunate, shameful, politically-motivated and ill-intended:CM Vijay RupaniJuly 20, 2019
Rajkot: Amid rising tension with Congress led Madhya Pradesh government over sharing of Narmada water, Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani today alleged that his counter part in the neighboring state Kamalnath and minister for Tourism Department and Narmada Valley Development Department Surendra Singh Baghel alias Honey Singh were issuing ultimatum to stop the supply of water with politically motivated ill-intention.
‘Madhya Pradesh Congress government minister Honey Singh has given very unfortunate and politically ill motived statement with lack of information. Chief Minister Kamalnathji is also repeating same statement. I clearly believe that only and only Congress and its governments display such politically ill motived mentality and issue such statements as they are not able to digest their devastating defeat. They are giving political touch to everything which is not good for people. Congress government had on earlier occasion also obstructed the progress of Narmada project through many attempts. Due to Congress government, permission to install gates over Narmada dam was delayed for 7 long years and there was no permission to complete the dam. The Congress party is doing politics over water.’
‘Through my today’s statement, I warn Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister and his minister that please Narmada don’t play any politics over Narmada. It is not good for the people. The Congress government has made a childish statement with complete lack of information. Narmada water distribution takes place as per the 1979 award of tribunal 1979. No change can be made to it by any state involved. Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Rajasthan are linked to Narmada Control Authority (NCA) which was formed by the central govt as per the order by Supreme Court which was very clear, that no change can be done in water distribution pattern upto 2022. If there is anything to rethink, discussion takes place in meeting of NCA and decision is taken by NCA which includes representative of irrigation department of the centre, and representatives of four states. This mechanism is established as per the Supreme Court order. And therefore childish statements that Madhya Pradesh will not release water to Gujarat, doesn’t look good.’
‘They allege that Gujarat is not generating power. I want to clarify that even today 250 MW power generation is taking place and Madhya Pradesh gets 57% share of power generated even today. There’s no truth that power generation is not taking place. Gujarat has never taken any decision unilaterally. Decision was taken in all states meeting on 15 April 2019 and we went forward as per the decision in the meeting.’
‘We have decided to fill water upto 138.68 meter level, in case of additional inflow, we will also run riverbed power station. But filling water upto highest 138 meter level is essential for testing purpose in order to ensure safety. Last year there was insufficient inflow. 16% share of power generated belongs to Gujarat also, but in order to prioritize safety, water storage upto 138 meter and thereby testing of dam’s full capacity is essential.’
‘Involved states are cooperating each other for last many years in good atmosphere. Madhya Pradesh government should not spoil the atmosphere.’
‘As per the Supreme Court order, resettlement of affected people is over. Congress government in Madhya Pradesh suddenly through a letter of Chief Secretary dated 27 February, 2019 conveyed that rehabilitation of 6,000 families was yet to be completed. A sub group meeting was called on 12 July and even in 18 July meeting, none senior official of Madhya Pradesh government arrived. On 18th July, in Sardar Sarovar Reservoir Regulation committee meeting, Madhya Pradesh government representative opposed the notes of the meeting and started mud sledging against NCA. It appears that Madhya Pradesh government is doing this for political motives.’
‘As per the historical award of tribunal, no state can make changes before 2022-24. Issuance of threats to Gujarat regarding Narmada water is improper. While MP government of Congress party is doing this with political motives, Gujarat Congress should also respond. Talking in this language doesn’t suit Kamalnath and his ministers. They should stop issuing threats to Gujarat and build good atmosphere for people’s good, especially when rain is delayed and availability of water is poor. Such politics doesn’t look good. It is Gujarat government’s right to get water and upto 2024 none can reduce the share of water. Legality is involved, Supreme Court order and NCA is involved. Gujarat will not tolerate any such threat and will get its share of water at any cost. We want to ware the Madhya Pradesh Congress government in reference to their statements. If they need to say something, let them say in NCA meeting. Why they should make statements outside? Gujarat has done nothing against the people of Madhya Pradesh. Tribunal award is binding to all those involved.’
Narmada project is deemed as the lifeline of water supply in Gujarat with over 3 crore people living in more than 165 cities and towns and 10000 villages in the state depend on it for its water needs.
Under the project water and electricity produced through related hydel units were shared among the four concerned states.
Madhya Pradesh Minister Baghel has said that in the past the BJP governments in MP were under the pressure from Gujarat (the home state of PM Narendra Modi) allowing more than allocated share of water. He said that now when Congress is in power, such practices won’t be allowed. He also claimed that Gujarat has not paid due electricity bills to MP.
In response to Madhya Pradesh minister’s statement, Gujarat BJP Chief Jitu Vaghani had warned MP government for agitation over Narmada water issue.
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