People protest industries being given Mahanadi’s water

Bhubaneswar, July 16 (IANS) More then two thousands residents, and social and political activists Friday staged a protest in Orissa’s Cuttack city against the use of water from Mahanadi river by industries.

Accusing the state government of providing water meant for drinking and irrigation to various industries, the demonstrators also threatened to launch a massive agitation if the government does not cancel its plan.

‘The government cannot give water to industries when there is already a scarcity,’ Bharatiya Janata Party general secretary Dharmendra Pradhan, who was among the protesters, told IANS.

‘Adequate water is not available for drinking and irrigation purpose. Residents of Cuttack city depend on Mahanadi river water and they are already facing water problems. The government has not made any capacity enhancement of the river water resources,’ he said.

More then 400 activists also carried out a motorcycle rally in the city, 26 km from Bhubaneswar, before gathering at city’s Jobra area near the Mahanadi river bank where a protest meeting was held under the banner of ‘Mahanadi Bancho Committee’.

Leaders of several other political parties, eminent citizens, women leaders and social activists also participated in the demonstration, Pradhan said.

The Mahanadi river flows through Chhattisgarh, Orissa and Jharkhand.

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