Provide Narmada Water To Banaskantha, Jignesh Mevani Demands

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Provide Narmada Water To Banaskantha, Jignesh Mevani Demands

| Updated: June 20, 2022 18:18

Independent Congress-backed MLA from Vadgam Jignesh Mevani today warned that if the government does not take decisive steps to redirect water from the Narmada river to Banaskantha, protests will be held in the state. He said that he would meet with Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel one last time tomorrow to raise the issue and come to a mutual decision. However, if the talks seem fruitless, agitation will be launched.

Mevani demanded that the government call a special one-day session and make a plan so as to fill Karamawat Lake and Mukteshwar Dam with the water from the Narmada river, and then allocate a budget accordingly. He said that while in previous years the government raised the issue of water shortage during elections and made lofty promises, this year such tactics would not fly.  

Furthermore, Mevani said  “For the last 30 years the government has been fooling the people of Banaskantha, saying in every election that this time Karamawat Lake and Mukteshwar Dam will be filled with Narmada water. However, no plan has been made yet. Nor has any kind of budget been allocated.”

Explaining the situation, Mevani cited a report by the policy commission and said that by 2040, 800 million people in the country, including Gujarat, will not have water to drink. “People will go thirsty by 2040. But people are already thirsty in Banaskantha,” he said.  

Mevani also said that CM Patel apparently had sent a team of officials to Banaskantha after 15000 farmers rallied over the water problem. However, it is still not known for what purpose the team was sent. He insisted that the plan to extend water from Narmada to the district was ready. The government now has to allocate a budget and execute it.

The problem of water scarcity in Banaskatha is a serious problem. Rather than providing a tangible solution, this problem has ended up being just an issue for elections. This year, the problem has become even more dire, so much so that the women in the district have written a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to seek some relief.

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