New Delhi: An RSP member Monday expressed
concern in Lok Sabha over sharing of Teesta river water with Bangladesh, saying the proposed agreement on the issue would seriously affect the livelihood of the people of North Bengal.
Prasanta Kumar Majumdar raised the matter by walking into
the well of the House saying that the proposal to share Teesta
waters by a 50:50 ratio through an agreement, likely to be
signed during the upcoming visit of Prime Minister Manmohan
Singh to Bangladesh, would affect about one crore people of
five districts in the region.
Apparently on the same issue, West Bengal Chief Minister
Mamata Banerjee has cancelled her visit to Bangladesh as part
of the Prime Minister`s delegation.
Majumdar, who represents Balurghat constituency, said the
government should keep in mind that water supply for
irrigation purposes in this area should not be affected.
The lone RSP member said though he was not against river
water sharing and fully supported strengthening of relations
with Bangladesh, the livelihood of people of these districts
would be hit as most of them were dependent on agriculture.
The districts likely to be affected were Coochbehar,
Darjeeling, Jalpaiguri, North and South Dinajpur, he said,
adding that the people of the region were also dependent on
tea gardens, most of which had closed down.
Majumdar also said that the Teesta Barrage project, an
important source of hydro-electric power in eastern India
apart from supplying water for irrigation, would be affected
by the sharing of water at 50:50 ratio.