NGT junks petition questioning clearances to Mahadayi

The Kalasa-Bhandura Nala project, which is also dubbed as Mahadayi project, is undertaken by the Government of Karnataka to improve drinking water supply to the twin cities of Hubballi--Dharwad and the districts of Belgaum and Gadag. DH Photo

The NGT has dismissed a petition seeking its intervention on the Ministry of Environment and Forest (MOEF) decision to giving green clearances to Mahadayi project.

The NGT principal bench headed by Adarsh Kumar Goel hearing a petition filed by Goa Forward Party seeking to quash the MOEF approval said that the Kalasa-Bhandura Drinking Water Supply Scheme does not require any Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) as it involves drinking water supply and does not involve hydroelectric power generation for irrigation.

On the petitioner's contention that since the project involved hydroelectric power generation and irrigation and it should not be allowed without the EIA, the NGT said, “we are unable to accept the submission.”

"There is no basis for the presumption that the project will involve hydroelectric power generation and irrigation. If it involves such activities, the project proponent will have to follow the necessary procedure. If such activities are undertaken without EIA, it will be open to the aggrieved party to take remedies in accordance with the law," the bench said in its order.

The Kalasa-Bhandura Nala project, which is also dubbed as Mahadayi project, is undertaken by the Government of Karnataka to improve drinking water supply to the twin cities of Hubballi--Dharwad and the districts of Belgaum and Gadag.

The project involves building barrages across Kalasa and Bhandura, two tributaries of the Mahadayi river, to divert 7.56 TMC of water to the Malaprabha river which supplies the drinking water needs of the parched areas.  

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