Skip to main content

Drought in Gujarat? 30 lakh litres Narmada water being diverted to Coca Cola, 60 lakh litres to automobile units

By Our Representative
India's top anti-dam organization, Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA) has alleged that, despite continued deficit of rainfall this monsoon, the Gujarat government has been providing “huge quantities” of Narmada water, meant for irrigation, to some of the top industrial houses and the proposed Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC) region.
In a statement posted on Facebook, the NBA said, “Betraying drought-prone regions of Kutch-Suarashtra, Narmada water is being diverted to Coca Cola, Ambani and Adani. Over the last 30 years, just about 35-40 Narmada canals have been constructed, while the rest remain incomplete, hence farmers are unable to take advantage of Narmada waters. Yet, it is continued its the work of completing the Narmada dam to the full reservoir level (FRL) of 139 metres.”
Giving figures, the NBA statement, signed among others by well-known social activist Medha Patkar, said, “Each day, 30 lakh litres of water is being diverted to Coca Cola and 60 lakh litres to to motor car factories in Gujarat. This apart, the region that falls under the DMIC is being provided most of the Narmada water.”
Questioning the logic behind providing Narmada water to the Gujarat capital Gandhinagar, Ahmedabad and Vadodara, the NBA said, “This is being done by depriving thousands of drought-affected villages in the Kutch-Saurashtra region. The whole purpose of completing the dam to FRL 139 litres is political.”
The statement wondered why, despite “huge” industrial investments worth thousands of crores has been made in Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat has not providing any electricity from the Narmada dam's power house. “Though the two states have demanded compensation, just about Rs 3,500 crore has been paid”, it said.
Issued ahead of the call to join a protest rally at Badwani in Madhya Pradesh, bordering Gujarat situated nex to Narmada river, the statement said, “The Narmada satyagraha for water and land rights would begin on July 30 at the historic Rajghat on the banks of Narmada.”
Pointing out that the satyagraha would be preceded by moving around the Narmada river from July 13 to 22, the statement alleged, “One of the oldest cultural civilizations along the Narmada valley is on the verge of collapse by plans to build 30 big and 135 medium level dams on the river in Madhya Pradesh.”
“Each of these dams will oust lakhs of people”, the statement continued, adding, “Some of the most fertile lands which produce food and on which forests stand will be destroyed. Temples, mosques, schools, artifacts, trade, everything will be destroyed.”
“Worse”, the statement said, “The Madhya Pradesh government has worked out plans to divert between 5,000 and 15,000 litres water per day of Narmada waters to other rivers interlinking several rivers in order to satisfy corporates' greed for water.”
Pointing out that all this is in addition to the Gujarat government having already completed the Narmada dam work, with only gates left to be installed, the statement said, “In our estimate around 50,000 families are yet to be rehabilitated. In all, 244 villages and one town, Dharampur, are likely to be submerged once the gates are installed and closed.”
Even as conceding that Gujarat and Maharashtra have completed resettlement of 14,000 families, the statement said, in the NBA's estimates, around 45,000 houses would face submergence in Madhya Pradesh alone. It added, “Despite this, the Madhya Pradesh government has has told courts that there is no oustees remaining to be resettled.”

Comments

TRENDING

Green revolution "not sustainable", Bt cotton a failure in India: MS Swaminathan

Counterview Desk
In a recent paper in the journal “Current Science”, distinguished scientist PC Kesaven and his colleague MS Swaminathan, widely regarded as the father of the Green Revolution, have argued that Bt insecticidal cotton, widely regarded as the continuation of the Green Revolution, has been a failure in India and has not provided livelihood security for mainly resource-poor, small and marginal farmers.
Sharply taking on Green Revolution, the authors say, it has not been sustainable largely because of adverse environmental and social impacts, insisting on the need to move away from the simplistic output-yield paradigm that dominates much thinking. Seeking to address the concerns about local food security and sovereignty as well as on-farm and off-farm social and ecological issues associated with the Green Revolution, they argue in favour of what they call sustainable ‘Evergreen Revolution’, based on a ‘systems approach’ and ‘ecoagriculture’.
Pointing out that Evergreen Revol…

Rejoinder: Inescapable to have Central Water Commission as strong technical body in India

By BN Navalawala*
This is with reference to Counterview Blog (December 5, 2018), "Modi govt 'shelves' water reforms report, shows 'no interest' in its recommendations", below mentioned are my comments/observations thereon:
A committee was constituted under the Chairmanship of Dr. Mihir Shah, Former Member, Planning Commission, for restructuring of Central Water Commission (CWC) and Central Ground Water Board (CGWB) for optimal development of water resources in the country in the backdrop of Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM).

Some Hindu bodies in US defending BJP-RSS' divisive, violent activities: Agnivesh

Counterview Desk Last week, Washington DC saw speakers at a religious freedom roundtable, chaired by the US Ambassador for Religious Freedom, Sam Brownback, express concern over "eroding" space for religious freedom in India. Dr Mike Ghouse, executive director, of the Center for Pluralism in Washington DC, referring to the roundtable, said in an email alert that Indian-Americans have "a moral duty to prevent India from being labeled as a Country of Particular Concern by the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF)".

Preventing childhood deaths: India performs worse than Bangladesh, "equals" Pakistan

By Rajiv Shah
A just-released study, “The Pneumonia and Diarrhea Progress Report 2018”, prepared by the International Vaccine Access Centre (IVAC) at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, has identified India among 15 other countries which are still far off the mark in achieving the targets of the Global Action Plan for the Prevention of Pneumonia and Diarrhea (GAPPD).

India's rewritten textbooks talk of demerits of democracy, praise Hitler, underrate Mughals

Counterview Desk
A detailed, 3,800-word review of the books rewritten under directions of the BJP rulers across India since Prime Minister Narendra Modi came to power in May 2014 has suggested that one of aims of the books is to instill a sense of doubt about India’s democratic polity among the country’s young minds. Reviewed in the prestigious US journal, “The New York Review of Books”, in its latest issue (December 6, 2018) by Alex Traub, the scrutiny insists, the effort has also been to paint Indian history from the angle of “Hindu triumphalism”, even as creating “Islamophobia”.

Karnataka: NGO Akshay Patra "not sensitive" to nutrition demands of school children

Counterview Desk
Well-known civil rights organizations, Right to Food Campaign and Jan Swasthya Abhiyan, have sent a letter to the Union minister of human resource development, the Chief Minister of Karnataka, other concerned ministers and officials of the state expressing concerns regarding the mid-day meal (MDM) to school children, insisting, all contracts to the Akshay Patra for supply of MDM should be immediately terminated.

Govt of India "tarnishing" NGO reputation, dossier leaked selectively: Amnesty

Counterview Desk
Amnesty International India has said that a deliberate attempt is being made to tarnish its reputation by leaking a dossier, supposedly made by investigating agencies, to media without giving it access to any such information. The high profile NGO’s claim follows a Times Now report about proceedings launched by investigative agencies, including Enforcement Directorate (ED) against the rights body for “violations” of rules pertaining to overseas donations.

World Bank clarifies: Its 26th rank to India not for universal access to power but for ease of doing business

By Our Representative
In a major embarrassment to the Government of India, the World Bank has reportedly clarified that it has not ranked India 26th out of 130 countries for providing power to its population. The top international banker’s clarification comes following Union Power Minister Piyush Goyal’s claim that India has “improved to 26 position from 99” in access to electricity in just one year.

Four children die after poor UP Dalit, Muslim families forced to flee to forest area: PVCHR

Counterview Desk
Peoples’ Vigilance Committee on Human Rights (PVCHR) has said that the forest department police’s crackdown, allegedly without any prior notice, on Dalit and Muslim households in Dakhin Tola, Churk Bazaar, Sonbhadra district, Uttar Pradesh, beating up “children and old people, women, and men in an inhuman way”, has led to “forced displacement, starvation and discrimination”. This has reportedly affected about 350 people.

Vedanta is out but corporate loot continues in Odisha: Local activists tell NAPM yatra

By Our Representative
Lok Shakti Abhiyan leader Prafulla Samantara, winner of the Goldman Environmental (also known as Green Nobel) Prize in 2017, has regretted that though Sundergarh in Odisha, like other forest areas, is a fifth schedule area, where Forest Rights Act (FRA) and Panchayats (Extension to Scheduled Areas) Act (PESA) is applicable, but these laws are being “outrightly violated to facilitate corporate loot.”