C’garh’s barrages meant for water supply to industries: BJD

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Bhubaneswar/Raigarh: BJD vice president and Rajya Sabha MP Prasanna Acharya, who is leading the 12-member BJD team visiting Chhattisgarh for an on the spot verification of the projects on the upstream of Mahanadi river, today alleged that the neighbouring state is constructing barrages to supply water to industries.

Talking to newsmen during his visit, Acharya said, “Neither any drinking water project has been undertaken nor irrigation canals have been dug out as per plans for the projects. However, big pipes have been laid into the reservoir, which points towards supply of water to industries.”

He further stated, “The Central Water Commission (CWC) should act as a mediator in between the states and give permission to projects keeping the interest of all sides. But in this case, it has failed to do so.”

The team expressed concern during its visit to the Siori Narayan barrage constructed on private public partnership (PPP) mode.

Before entering Chhatisgarh, the team visited the Kanaktura area in Jharsuguda district, which is going to be affected by the projects on the other side of the border. People living in the border areas put forth their grievances before the BJD team.

Pradip Biswal, a local, said, “Due to the barrages over Kelo and Mahanadi, water has dried out in both the rivers. For the first time, we now ride a bike on the river bed. Farmers as well as fishermen are facing difficulties and losing their livelihood.”

Expressing similar views, Sambit Pradhan, another local, said, “We apprised the leaders of the issues and hope the Odisha government will undertake welfare schemes here.”

Meanwhile, in Raigarh town, the team was opposed by the activists of Ajit Jogi’s Janata Congress. Similar opposition was experienced by the team in Pamagada.

In Odisha, activists of BJP Yuva Morcha showed black flags to the team at Gandhi Chhak in Brajrajnagar and Belpahad gate.

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