BJD demands unconditional apology from Chhattisgarh CM Raman Singh for his statement on Mahanadi
Alleging that there is a tacit understanding between Chhattisgarh and Centre, BJD leader Prasanna Acharya said a conspiracy has been hatched to deprive Odisha people using Mahanadi river water.
BHUBANESWAR: The ruling BJD on Wednesday demanded an unconditional apology from Chhattisgarh chief minister Raman Singh for his statement that a major part of catchment of Mahanadi river is in Chhattisgarh and the state has exclusive right over its water.
“Singh's statement is erroneous, misleading and against the federal spirit of the constitution,” BJD vice-president and Rajya Sabha member Prasanna Acharya told media conference here.
Alleging that there is a tacit understanding between Chhattisgarh and Centre (both of which are BJP ruled), Acharya said a conspiracy has been hatched to deprive Odisha people using Mahanadi river water.
Stating that Chhattisgarh has used its share of water and use more, Singh had said at a media conference at Raigarh that neither Central Water Commission (CWC) nor the Centre can prevent it from doing so. Chhattisgarh will complete all ongoing projects on Mahanadi river, he said.
Acharya said that the stand of Singh which came after Prime Minister Narendra Modi's misleading statement on Mahanadi river water at Cuttack on May 26 points towards an understanding between the Centre and Chhattisgarh over the issue.
Condemning the statement of Singh, BJD vice-president Debi Prasad Mishra referred to the recommendation of the Commission on Water, Irrigation and Water Ways at the time of construction of Hirakud dam which said Madhya Pradesh and Odisha can claim 40 percent and 60 percent of Mahanadi river water.
An official report prepared in 1947 also required that 5 MW electricity generated from Hirakud should be shared with Madhya Pradesh, the state on the upper catchment. While Odisha has not deviated from any of these arrangements, Chhattisgarh has violated all recommendations, Mishra said.
Countering Singh's statement that BJD is doing politics over the Mahanadi river water dispute, BJD general secretary Sanjay Dasburma said Chhattisgarh is going to polls later this year which is earlier than Odisha. Alleging that Singh has raised the issue because of polls in Chhattisgarh, Dasburma said that BJD will continue to fight for the rights of people of Odisha. BJD state secretary Bijay Nayak was also present. The Biju Yuva Janata Dal (BYJD) and Biju Chhatra Janata Dal (BCJD) demonstrated at the Master Canteen square here in protest against the statement of Singh.