BJD govt politicising Mahanadi issue with panchayat polls in mind: Raman Singh

Bhubaneswar: Chhattisgarh chief minister Raman Singh on Wednesday trashed the claims of the Odisha government on the construction of barrages in the upper catchment areas of Mahanadi saying the ruling party is politicising the issue.

Talking to reporters, Singh stated a non-issue was being made into an issue to gain political mileage keeping in mind the ensuing panchayat polls in Odisha.

“This is not an issue at all….Chhattisgarh is using only 20% of the river water…The issue is being played up to achieve the political game plans (of ruling BJD). It is being deliberately raised in view of the ensuing panchayat polls,” Singh maintained.

When huge quantities of water is being released through sluice gates of Hirakud dam during monsoon season every year, why is the Odisha government objecting to the projects being constructed by the neighbouring government, which also has rights to use the river water, the Chhattisgarh CM wondered.

“Why it (Odisha government) can’t understand that Chhattishgarh’s water flows into Mahandadi and so much water flows that sometimes 22 gates of the dam are opened at a time to release flood water,” he noted.

U,ndeterred by the ruling BJD’s token protest in Odisha on Wednesday which witnessed stopping of many Chhattisgarh-bound goods trains at various railway stations in the state, Singh reiterated that all the ongoing projects on Mahanadi have got the clearance from Central Water Commission (CWC).

“We want to clarify that all the projects which the Chhattisgarh government is constructing on the river are permitted by the CWC,” he stressed.