'Yettinahole not a linear project'

'Yettinahole not a linear project'

State govt is misleading people, says NITK former professor

NITK former professor S G Mayya has said that the State government and Karnataka Neeravari Nigama Ltd (KNNL) have been misleading people by furnishing false information on the Yettinahole project.

Addressing mediapersons in Mangaluru on Monday, he said that during the argument at the National Green Tribunal on November 18, the government advocate did not turn up while the KNNL advocate tried to mislead the Tribunal by saying that it is ‘Linear Project’.

“In reality, only projects like laying a railway track, a road or an electricity line can be considered as linear projects. A project with, among other things, eight weirs built at different places on different tributaries of River Nethravathi, 12 pumphouses built to pump water at different places, about 100 km length pipe line to be laid to different places, power transmission lines and tanks in the Western Ghats cannot be considered as a linear project,” he explained.

Other side of project
The government has claimed that the Yettinahole project is a drinking water project, but the project report mentions that nine tmc water will be used for irrigation, he added.
Prof Mayya further said that the Wildlife Authority and the National Biodiversity Authority of India, who are parties in the application, have not submitted their replies. “They are Constitutional bodies and are required to give factual reports,” he said, and reminded that the Yettinahole project will be detrimental to not only the ecosystem of the Western Ghats, but also all of South India, as the main rivers of South India originate in the Western Ghats.

“Although the National Green Tribunal has imposed a stay on the Yettinahole project, the work is being carried out, which amounts to contempt of court,” said Prof Mayya.

Water quality

“The State government itself has mentioned that only 50 per cent water is potable or dependable. Under such circumstances, it is not possible to provide water for the people of Kolar and Chikkaballapur districts through the Yettinahole project. The resolution passed by the Zilla Panchayat, Mangaluru City Corporation, gram panchayats and other local bodies have also been ignored by the government,” the professor insisted.

The National Water Development Agency, in its submission to the National Green Tribunal, has clearly mentioned, “Since 8.98 tmc of water is released to the irrigation tanks in the Cauvery and Krishna basins, it has to be accounted for by the Cauvery and Krishna Tribunals in allocation of water from these rivers to the disputing States”, Prof Mayya said.

Right to water
“The government has argued in the Tribunal that the people in the River Nethravathi basin have no rights on the river water. Denying the local residents of their water rights is against the water law,” he added.

Mangalore City Corporation Deputy Mayor Purushottam Chitrapur, Hadinalkupatna Mogaveera Sangha Secretary Kumar Mendon, Nethravathi Horata Samithi leader Uttam Alva and member Dinakar Shetty were present on the occasion.

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