Odishatv Bureau

Bhubaneswar: Leader of Opposition Narasingha Mishra today said the State would be able to protect the interest of its people in the Mahanadi water sharing dispute with Chhattisgarh if it shows sincerity in pursuing the matter.

“If the case is presented before the apex court properly by an experienced lawyer, the judgement could tilt in favour of Odisha,” Mishra told mediapersons.

The Centre is bound to form a tribunal to resolve the Mahanadi water row, as per the legal provisions, he said.

Even the Union Water Resources Minister Uma Bharati had said as talks between Chhattisgarh and Odisha did not prove conclusive, a tribunal is the only solution to the issue, Mishra elaborated.

On the other hand, BJD spokesperson Amar Prasad Satpathy stated the Odisha government will definitely present its views in the apex court firmly. “The Centre has violated the law by not forming a tribunal,” he added.

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The Odisha government on Friday filed a counter affidavit in the apex court accusing the Centre of providing misleading information pertaining to the ongoing Mahanadi water dispute with Chhattisgarh.

The move comes after the Centre submitted an affidavit before the Supreme Court contending that there is no need to constitute a tribunal to resolve the Mahanadi river water dispute as Odisha did not provide any data or adduce any evidence in support of its stand.

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In its 60-page affidavit, the Odisha government has maintained that the Centre had earlier committed that a decision to set up a Tribunal would be taken before November 19 but failed to do so thereby violating the provisions of inter-State water disputes act.

Earlier, Odisha had moved the Supreme Court on the issue and in the last hearing held on October 9, the counsel for Government of India had said that a decision on the tribunal would be taken before November 19, 2017. The next hearing is slated for December 11.

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