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  Metros   Mumbai  29 Jun 2017  Bombay HC orders probe in equitable distribution of Godavari

Bombay HC orders probe in equitable distribution of Godavari

Published : Jun 29, 2017, 2:26 am IST
Updated : Jun 29, 2017, 2:26 am IST

The said region is reeling under severe drought since 2012.

Bombay High Court
 Bombay High Court

Mumbai: The Bombay HC has warned chief secretary Sumit Mallik of initiating contempt proceedings if the state fails to file a convincing affidavit containing a time and budget-bound undertaking regarding equitable distribution of the Godavari river water to Jayakwadi dam and Marathwada regions. The said region is reeling under severe drought since 2012.

On Wednesday, a division bench of justices A.S. Oka and V.V. Kankanwadi was hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by Marathwada Janata Vikas Parishad which contended that despite a detailed court order towards equitable distribution of water from the Godavari river basin in 2016, the state government was deliberately delaying implementation of the same. The order directed the government to follow the Maharashtra State Water Policy and prioritise release of water to drought-hit parts of Marathwada and Jayakwadi dam.

Advocate Pradeep Desh-mukh who appeared for the petitioners told the court that the state was deliberately dragging its feet on the issue and had no intention of implementing distribution of water from the river.

“The state has sanctioned only Rs 38 crore in this year’s budget for the project, which is estimated to be worth Rs 5,500 cr. As a result, suffering of the people in drought-hit Marathwada has only aggravated with the condition remaining unchanged since 2012,” he said.

Meanwhile, the state said that it had filed three affidavits after the high court order, enumerating the problems to which the court had only said that submissions in the affidavit were vague and ambiguous.  

“We want you to file a detailed and clear affidavit which mentions the time it will take for the project to be implemented and how and when funds will be made available,” the bench directed. Addressing the chief secretary, the bench said that it would be forced to initiate contempt proceedings if the affidavit was not filed by July 24. The PIL is scheduled for hearing on July 29.

Tags: jayakwadi dam, godavari river
Location: India, Maharashtra, Mumbai (Bombay)