Govt panel for stoppage of work on Sarovar Project: Patkar
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Last Updated: Wednesday, March 24, 2010, 00:26
New Delhi: Claiming that a Government- appointed panel has recommended that no further construction work on Sarovar Sardar Project should be permitted, social activist Medha Patkar today demanded the Centre issue a 'stop work' notice to concerned agencies.

Patkar, who has been spearheading the agitation against construction of the Narmada dam, said the Planning Commission should review the project fully "since not only the approved investment limit, but also the environmental conditions are being flouted by the states".

"Investment clearence for the SSP was for Rs 6406 crore in 1988 and today, the project cost is Rs 45,000 crore as per the Report of the Working Group on Water Resources of the Planning Commission and it will escalate up to Rs 70,000 crore by 2012," she told reporters here.

Patkar claimed that the Devendra Pandey committee on Narmada appointed by the Ministry of Environent and Forest has recommended that no further construction work on Sarovar Sardar Project should be permitted.

Copies of the 'executive summary' of the report was also distributed at the press conference.

"The Centre, the Environment Ministry should issue a stop work notice to the concerned on the matter. The work should be stopped," she said.

The activist also said the Madhya Pradesh Government had no political will to punish officers and others involved in "corruption worth a few hundred crore ruppees" in rehabilitation of the people displaced due to the work.

She also charged the Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh Governments were hell bent on erecting gates of 17-metre high.

"The demand that the Centre must fund the project with thousands of crores or declare it as a 'National Project', contrary to the stand of its own sanctioning and monitoring authorities, is also indicative of Gujarat's politics, stinking of irrationality and immaturity, showing neither prudence nor progressive outlook," she said.


First Published: Wednesday, March 24, 2010, 00:26

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