NEW DELHI: The Biju Janata Dal (BJD) on Wednesday raised the issue of environmental clearance given to Polavaram project without public hearing and asked the Government to explain how the final clearance was given to the project without any survey.
Raising the issue during question hour, BJD MP Bhartruhari Mahtab said the Ministry of Environment and Forests had granted environmental clearance to Polavaram project on October 2005 basing on a design flood estimation of 36 lakh cusecs.
Mahtab said the design flood estimation of the project was revised to about 50 lakh cusecs by the Central Water Commission. The BJD has been opposing the project which will affect the tribal population in Malkangiri district.
Replying to Mahtab, Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar said ‘stop work’ is on, so there is no work.
“I will give specific details because there are two decisions. Therefore, I will give the details to the members,” Javadekar told the House.
Earlier, Mahtab raised the question over validity of environmental clearance saying “can such clearance be termed valid when the design flood estimation was only 36 lakh cusecs?”
“Is it not true that environmental clearance was given in September, 2006 without public hearing in project- affected areas, like Odisha? Has any forest land in Odisha been affected due to the construction of protective embankments of the Polavaram Project?” Mahtab asked the Environment Minister.