Bhubaneswar: The state government has blamed the Chhattisgarh government for the flood-like situation in the state. State Water Resources secretary PK Jena has complained against Chhattisgarh government to Union Minister of State for Water Resources Arjun Ram Meghwal Wednesday.
According to official sources, the flood-like situation in the Mahanadi system was caused by torrential rains in Chhattisgarh, and the sudden release of excess water from the Ravishankar Dam and two other medium projects there.
“During a review meeting here Jena has informed me that Chhattisgarh is releasing more water than it supposed to be. I will discuss this with the Chhattisgarh government,” said Meghwal who was in Bhubaneswar Wednesday to review the Mahanadi issue.
When interstate issues arise, the Centre is playing the role of a catalyst between the two states, he said. The water dispute between the two states should be resolved through discussions, he added.
Meanwhile, politics over the issue has gained momentum. The ruling BJD, which has already launched a campaign to save the Mahanadi as Chhattisgarh had started stopping water during the non-monsoon season, has slammed the state for releasing excess water into Mahanadi without prior intimation.
BJD vice president Debi Prasad Mishra alleged that the neighbouring state is releasing water from its mega projects without prior intimation, resulting in flood-like situation in the state.
“We feared the release of water by Chhattisgarh and it happened. We have been saying that the neighbouring state is acting as per its whims and fancies. When farmers of Odisha face water scarcity they don’t release water, but during the rains they release water mindlessly without informing us,” the BJD leader stated.
Mishra said the Chhattisgarh government has built big barrages only to serve the interests of industries there. This affects Odisha, he alleged.
However, Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee president Niranjan Patnaik blamed both Chhattisgarh and the BJD government for the situation.
“The act of Chhattisgarh government will result in flood here, and it will be very dangerous. The incapable state government is also equally responsible for the situation,” Patnaik said.
Reacting to the BJD’s allegations, Chhattisgarh Water Resources Minister Brijmohan Agrawal said, “Our state escaped floods as Odisha opened the gates of Hirakud Dam. If both the states coordinate there will be no problem.”