Skip to main content

Rajghat on Narmada bank may submerge as Modi prepares for Sept 17 birthday bash at Sardar Sarovar dam

By Our Representative
Even as Prime Minister Narendra Modi prepares for his gala function at the Sardar Sarovar dam in Gujarat on his birthday, September 17, reports from across the border in Madhya Pradesh suggest that the officialdom is all set to "destroy" Rajghat, situated on the banks of Narmada off Badwani town.
The site, where the remains of Mahatma Gandhi, Kasturba Gandhi and Mahadevbhai Desai have been kept, shot into prominence following the Madhya Pradesh administration seeking to uproot the Gandhi Samadhi at Rajghat with the help of bulldozers on July 27. However, it was forced to re-establish the Gandhi Samadhi because of stiff opposition from the powerful anti-dam organization, Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA).
According to sources, the state administration has issued instructions to destroy the bridge which connects Rajghat, even as asking hundreds of people living in the Rajghat village to move to rehabilitation sites, which, NBA says, remain without any basic infrastructure to live. People have been warned that the village would be submerged as waters in the dam's reservoir reach up to the brim -- 138.68 metres.
If the bridge is destroyed, says an NBA source, farmers, workers and fisherfolk, who reach Badwani to earn a livelihood, would have to travel a "very long distance". In 2013, the waters at Rajghat had gone up by 15 feet as the Narmada dam got filled up during monsoon, and several of the houses, temples and trees got partially or fully submerged. "With the dam's gates closed, things might worsen this year", the source claimed.
A spot where a large number of local people offer their prayers to river Narmada, considered Mother Goddess, with coconuts and flowers in hand, Rajghat is not the only historical spot that would be adversely affected because of rising waters in the upstream of the dam.
Locals claim, another major spot that would be adversely affected as waters rise is the Maheshwar fort, the 16th century architectural site famous for its spectacular view from Narmada River, constructed by Queen Ahalya Bai Holkar as her residential palace. The spot is well known for its temples, revered by people from across Central India.
Meanwhile, as part of its new strategy, the NBA, after the recent release of its leader Medha Patkar from jail on bail, has started a new campaign, Narmada Nyay Yatra, to go to villages and meet people on the bank to explain how the state and Central governments are allegedly brutally battling against them.
An NBA release said, "The false criminal cases filed as well as the force and intimidation used to try and suppress, oppress and vacate the villages has already faced the challenge of people’s power. Now we are challenging of Modi’s plan to dedicate the dam to the people on his own birthday through a celebration on September, 17."
"During public meetings, landless in villages like Pichhodi and Bhavti have narrated the story of those who signed the official affidavits to receive the package of Rs 5.80 lakh for house construction and left their own old house, but didn’t receive the amount or the package."
"The government has now started allotting housing plots, which are only one third of the area offered by the Narmada Water Disputes Tribunal Award as a legal right. At some spots, the oustees are being asked to return a portion of the plots they had been allotted years ago", the release said.
The NBA further said, "Fisherpeople, boatsmen and potters have not yet received the rights which were recently promised when their agitation reached its peak. Slogan mongering and political expediency are cheating the landless. The Yatra and the large gatherings are an opportunity to let people know of these rhetorics."

Comments

Unknown said…
The Hindu Mahasabha and RSS killed Gandhi. MOdi a RSS member participated in the destruction of the Babri Mosque. It is expected that he will ensure the removal of Gandhi from our history.

TRENDING

Women innovators on simple, revolutionary alternate solutions for water problems

By Proshakha Maitra, Mansee Bal Bhargava* The detrimental effects of uncontrolled population rise and accelerated change in the global climate have posed tremendous pressure on the water and sanitation. This calls all stakeholders, from both developed and developing nations, to improve their resilience and to instigate sustainability. It is more crucial than ever to optimise the use of the resources we have on hand since the world population is projected to reach 9.7 billion by 2050.

IMA vs Ramdev: Why what's good or bad for goose should be good or bad for gander

By Dr Amitav Banerjee, MD* Baba Ramdev and his associate Balkrishna faced the wrath of the Supreme Court for their propaganda about their Ayurvedic products and belittling mainstream medicine. Baba Ramdev had to apologize in court. His apology was not accepted and he may face the contempt of court with harsher punishment. The Supreme Court acted on a public interest litigation (PIL) moved by the Indian Medical Association (IMA).

Alleged killing of another Bangladesh youth inside Indian territory: NHRC inquiry sought

By Kirity Roy* There was yet another incident of the killing of a Bangladeshi youth by the Border Security Force personnel attached with ‘Barthar’ BOP of ‘G’ Company of 75 BSF Battalion. In last five years several incidents of killings happened under this police station’s jurisdiction and the cases will get the award as “Not Guilty” as usual.

Magnetic, stunning, Protima Bedi 'exposed' malice of sexual repression in society

By Harsh Thakor*  Protima Bedi was born to a baniya businessman and a Bengali mother as Protima Gupta in Delhi in 1949. Her father was a small-time trader, who was thrown out of his family for marrying a dark Bengali women. The theme of her early life was to rebel against traditional bondage. It was extraordinary how Protima underwent a metamorphosis from a conventional convent-educated girl into a freak. On October 12th was her 75th birthday; earlier this year, on August 18th it was her 25th death anniversary.

Modi model, Hindutva icon 'justified' alliance with Muslim League before Independence

By Shamsul Islam*  Our PM describes himself as ‘Hindu’ nationalist and member of RSS. He proudly shares the fact that he was groomed to be a political leader by one of the two fathers of the Hindutva politics, MS Golwalkar (the other being VD Savarkar) and given the task of establishing Hindutva polity in India after eradicating secularism.

A Hindu alternative to Valentine's Day? 'Shiv-Parvati was first love marriage in Universe'

By Rajiv Shah*   The other day, I was searching on Google a quote on Maha Shivratri which I wanted to send to someone, a confirmed Shiv Bhakt, quite close to me -- with an underlying message to act positively instead of being negative. On top of the search, I chanced upon an article in, imagine!, a Nashik Corporation site which offered me something very unusual. 

Crusader for people’s causes, this Hollywood actor entered 'unexplored zones' in US

By Harsh Thakor*  Marlon Brando on April 3rd completes his birth centenary. He perished in 2004, on July 1, aged 80 years. Arguably in Hollywood Brando penetrated sensitivity and versatility at an unparalleled scale and discovered new horizons or explored path breaking zones in acting.

Nuclear power expansion: Is AEC's new, 'unrealistic' target fully backed by PMO?

By Shankar Sharma*  Another unrealistic and tall claim by Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) has been announced: India is eyeing 100 GW nuclear power by 2047, the AEC chairman  AK Mohanty   has said. A few years ago, the dream target for the Indian nuclear establishment was 275,000 MWe of nuclear power by 2050 (as per DAE document of 2008 "A Strategy for the Growth of Electricity in India”). Now this target of 100 GW nuclear power by 2047. And as at the end of February 2024, the actual nuclear power capacity was only 7,480 MWe, which formed only 1.7% of the total power capacity in the country. 

'Flawed' argument: Gandhi had minimal role, naval mutinies alone led to Independence

Counterview Desk Reacting to a Counterview  story , "Rewiring history? Bose, not Gandhi, was real Father of Nation: British PM Attlee 'cited'" (January 26, 2016), an avid reader has forwarded  reaction  in the form of a  link , which carries the article "Did Atlee say Gandhi had minimal role in Independence? #FactCheck", published in the site satyagrahis.in. The satyagraha.in article seeks to debunk the view, reported in the Counterview story, taken by retired army officer GD Bakshi in his book, “Bose: An Indian Samurai”, which claims that Gandhiji had a minimal role to play in India's freedom struggle, and that it was Netaji who played the crucial role. We reproduce the satyagraha.in article here. Text: Nowadays it is said by many MK Gandhi critics that Clement Atlee made a statement in which he said Gandhi has ‘minimal’ role in India's independence and gave credit to naval mutinies and with this statement, they concluded the whole freedom struggle.

Indians witnessing 'regression to Hindutva politics' under Modi ahead of elections

By Bhabani Shankar Nayak*  The forthcoming general election in India, scheduled from April 19, 2024, to June 1, 2024, to elect the 543 members of the 18th Lok Sabha and the new Government of India, carries immense significance for the preservation of India's identity as a liberal, secular, and constitutional democracy.