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Patnaik urges Naidu to stop construction of Polavaram dam

Bhubaneswar, October 10, 2017: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Tuesday requested his Andhra Pradesh counterpart N Chandrababu Naidu to stop the ongoing Polavaram dam work immediately till issues concerning Odisha are resolved. 

“It is reliably learnt that construction of the Polavaram Project is going on at a rapid  pace without  correctly  assessing the  design flood  and backwater extent  in Malkangiri  District  of  Odisha, which is in violation of the Godavari Water Dispute Tribunal  (GWDT) Award  and  is also not  conforming  to  the  national standards /norms,” Patnaik said in a letter to Naidu.

Maintaining that the  Ministry  of  Environment,  Forest & Climate Change (MoEF&CC) vide its Office Memorandum dated 23.06.2015 had decided to keep the 'stop work order' in abeyance for  one year  based on the  request of AP CM vide his letter dated 25.04.2015 subject to several conditions, Patnaik said one of the conditions mentioned in this Memorandums that the AP Government, which  had earlier assured not to  impound the  reservoir of the Project till the  issues raised by Chhattisgarh and Odisha are resolved, should not impound the reservoir without specific permission from the MoEF&CC.

“The MoEF&CC vide its  aforementioned  Office  Memorandum had kept the 'stop  work  order'  in abeyance for a period of one year only, i.e. upto 22.06.2016. However, the construction work on Polavaram project is going on without any further   permission   by MoEF&CC, as per records available with Odisha. No efforts have also been made to resolve the issues relating to the Odisha,” the Odisha CM stated.

“In view of the above, it is requested that the construction work of the Polavaram Project should be stopped immediately and the work may not recommence till the issues concerning the State of Odisha are resolved,” Patnaik requested.

Patnaik’s letter to Naidu came a few days after Union Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari and Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu inspected one of the biggest multipurpose projects in the country at Polavaram project site in Andhra Pradesh's West Godavari district to take stock of the ongoing work.

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