Mahanadi water dispute: Odisha files affidavit in the Supreme Court countering Center’s against the Mahandi tribunal

Bhubaneswar: Odisha Government on Friday filed a counter affidavit in the Supreme Court stating that what the Center had submitted in the apex court on Wednesday to avoid constituting tribunal on Mahandi water dispute is misleading.

“The State government has filed its counter affidavit,” said BJD spokesperson and Rajya Sabha MP Pratap Keshari Deb to the reporters after he had remarked  “The affidavit filed by the Central government in the Supreme Court is based on false information. We condemn it in the strongest of terms”

In the 60-page affidavit, the state Government reportedly has refuted the allegation in which the Center had maintained before the Apex Court that Odisha had not provided sufficient information to support its demand for the tribunal.

The state government is reported to have stated in the affidavit that it had submitted 700 pages of documents to the Center when it applied to have the Mahanadi Water dispute Tribunal constituted under Interstate RiverWater Dispute Act 1956. Odisha had also provided the documents to the Central Water Commission, to the Government of Chhatisgarh and to the National Institute of Hydrology, Roorkee.

Odisha has also submitted its reasons why it was not in favor of resolving the issue through the Joint Negotiation Committee.

In addition odisha government has pointed to the instances when Center had committed to constitute the Mahanadi Tribunal and how it has backtracked later.

On October 9, the Center had told the Supreme Court that decision regarding formation of the tribunal would be taken before November 19.

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On July 31 this year, the then Union Minister of State for Water Resources Sanjeev Kumar Balyan while replying to a query by A V Swamy, MP from Odisha had told in the Rajya Sabha that the draft Cabinet Note on the formation of the tribunal has been prepared.

Odisha government has also disapproved the Center’s seeking excuse not to forn a separate tribunal for Mahanadi water dispute on the ground that it is bringing in a single tribunal platform for all interstate watee issues.

Delay in tribunal constitution would spoil its purpose, maintained the state government in its affidavit as per source fed reports.

 

 

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