Andhra farmers protest
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Home / India News / 2007 / May 2007 / May 15, 2007
Andhra farmers protest against Babli dam construction
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Andhra farmers protest against Babli dam construction

Farmers from Andhra Pradesh continued their protest against the construction of Babli dam on Tuesday, saying it would badly affect fertile farmland in the state.

New Delhi, May 15 : Farmers from Andhra Pradesh continued their protest against the construction of Babli dam on Tuesday, saying it would badly affect fertile farmland in the state.

Thousands of farmers from Telangana region marched through the streets in New Delhi and staged sit-in protest against the Babli Power Project, which is being built across the Godavari River in Nanded District of Maharashtra.

The farmers, joined by Telugu Desham Party (TDP) members, said the project is within the storage area of Sriramsagar Project in Andhra Pradesh.

A delegation of Telugu Desam Party (TDP) led by their chief N Chandrababu Naidu met President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam seeking his intervention in the issue.

Naidu said he had urged Kalam to direct the Maharashtra Government to stop the project.

"It's totally illegal project, which they are constructing. Apart from Babli, they are constructing 11 more projects. If they complete all these projects, especially six districts of Telangana, Uttar Telangana is going to become a desert," Naidu told reporters after emerging from the meeting with Kalam.

Earlier in the day, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh urged the TDP delegation to not politicise the issue.

He also said that the river waters are a national resource and all political parties must work together to ensure equitable utilization of this national resource.

Stating that the matter was presently before courts, the Prime Minister assured the delegation that the Centre would ensure that justice is done to both Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra.

Yesterday, the Parliament was adjourned on the same issue, as TDP MPs created uproar and alleged that the Maharashtra Government was constructing the dam across the Godavari River "illegally" and shouted that the construction would hit the flow of water to Andhra Pradesh (AP).

The riparian issue is currently in the Supreme Court, which has asked the Centre to resolve the row amicably.

Andhra Pradesh alleges the project, which has a potential to draw 65 TMC (Thousand million cubic feet) water out of the 90 TMC capacity Sriramsagar project, would deprive seven districts of Telangana district of drinking water.

ANI

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