Mahanadi project issue

Separate tribunal to resolve Mahanadi water dispute: Oil minister

Sambalpur: Union Petroleum and Natural Gas minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Monday said a separate tribunal would be constituted to resolve the Mahanadi water dispute with Chhattisgarh government.

“Looking at the inter-state water disputes in different states of the country, the government at center is planning to form a permanent tribunal but with a different approach. The new tribunal will have the quasi judicial power to deal with the disputes with more power than before,” said Pradhan during his visit to Chipilima cast light in Sambalpur.

The minister, however, made it clear that since the Mahanadi water dispute needs an immediate solution, there will be a separate tribunal for it.

Practically, it is seen that some states are not obeying the directions of the tribunal. Hence, the government is thinking of a new tribunal and see that its directions would be mandatory, Pradhan said.

He admitted that the issue of Mahanadi is separate from rest others.

“Hence, separating Mahanadi from others is on the card,” he added.

Last week, the union cabinet approved an amendment to the Inter-State Water Disputes Act of 1956 to allow for the setting up of a permanent tribunal to deal with the inter-state water disputes.

The Odisha government has already filed a petition with the Centre for setting up of a tribunal to resolve the Mahanadi river water dispute with Chhattisgarh government.

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