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Central team to inspect Mahanadi river bed reclamation at Cuttack 

The court had also directed to strengthen and widen the river embankment with sand and shoal besides developing the low-lying areas of the city.

Published: 25th September 2021 09:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 25th September 2021 09:00 AM   |  A+A-

Union Minister of State for Water Resources Bisweswar Tudu discussing with lawyers at New Delhi on Thursday | Express

By Express News Service

CUTTACK: Days after terming the sand filling on Mahanadi river bed illegal, Union Minister of State for Water Resources Bisweswar Tudu on Thursday said a Central team will soon inspect the site in the city to study the adverse impact on natural course of the river and flow of water due to Baliyatra Riverfront Improvement (BARFI) project.

The Union Minister, who held a high-level meeting with his department officials and a team of advocates from Cuttack at New Delhi, said the officials of Water Resources and Environment, Forest and Climate Change ministries will make an assessment on the sand filling from Jobra Barrage to Gadgadia Ghat and submit its report to the Ministry. 

“Though it is an affair of the Odisha government, encroachment of river bed of the inter-state Mahanadi system is an important matter. Hence, the Central government will send a team for inspection of the project. Necessary action will be taken after submission of the report by the team,” he said.

Earlier, advocates led by Sishir Das and Pradip Pattnaik had submitted a petition to Tudu who visited Cuttack to participate in ‘Namami Gange’ programme organised by local BJP unit. They alleged that the State government has violated the order of the Orissa High Court by encroaching the Mahanadi river bed.

Hearing a PIL, the High Court on February 27, 2012 had directed the IOCL and the government to take steps to enhance the water retaining capacity of Jobra barrage by dredging the reservoir area up to 15 ft deep from Jobra to Dhabaleswar Gada. The court had also directed to strengthen and widen the river embankment with sand and shoal besides developing the low-lying areas of the city.But violating the court order, the government has reclaimed around 600 acre of land and handed over it to IDCO by changing its kissam for BARFI project, the lawyers apprised the Union Minister. 



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