Budget disappoints districts

Lack of water supply plan leaves all unimpressed

Apart from an amount of Rs 50 crore, which has been set aside for the overall development of Chikkaballapur, there is no other project declared for the benefit of the district.

Also, although Rs 200 crore has been allotted for the drinking water project in Etthinahole in Sakaleshpur, the project would benefit and spread to Bayaluseeme or dry land districts, Bangalore Rural, Chitradurga, Kolar, Tumkur and Chikkaballapur.

Nandi Hills

The chief minister had promised to set aside funds for development of the Nandi Hills, but did not mention this in the proposal.

There was also no mention of implementing the report submitted by irrigation expert Dr G S Paramashivaiah, which had raised great hopes of the district getting permanent irrigation facilities.

The people therefore had to be satisfied with funds being allotted for provision of drinking water and development projects in the district.

Future of the Report

The Permanent Irrigation Struggle Committee tried to pressurize the government into implementing the permanent irrigation project by organizing bundh in both Kolar and Chikkaballapur on February 14.

The current budget proposal, however, has not satisfied members of the Committee.
They too complained on how the chief minister mentioned diverting the west-flowing rivers of the Western Ghats while proposing the budget, but failed to say anything clearly about the Paramashivaiah Report.

Citizens are agreeing with the Union Law Minister Veerappa Moily, who said implementation of the Paramashivaiah Report, which inspired the February 14 bundh, would be difficult unless implementation of the Etthinahole project gets priority.

The members of the Committee had been insisting on implementation of the Project the last few years. Dr Paramashivaiah himself was invited and participated in the protests, which included padayatras, rallies and bundhs.

At one stage, Dr Paramashivaiah had even threatened to undertake fast for the cause of the protestors.

Changed stance

The turn of the New Year, however, found the Committee members shift gears a bit. “The district needs water. Whether it is the Alamatti Dam or anywhere else does not matter to us,” they said.

They submitted memoranda to the chief minister at the time of the bundh as well as through Balagangadharanath Swami of Adichunchanagiri Mutt.

The members asked for water to be diverted to the district from the Western Ghats, but did not stress on the implementation of the Paramashivaiah Report much.

The developments seem to be an indication that the Report would take more time to be implemented or may end up in the waste bin.

The residents of the district are now waiting for 2014, hoping for a successful implementation of at least the Etthinahole project.

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