Cuttack : In a bid to save the Mahanadi from the ill-effects of industrialization, a mass convention was organized at the Jobra barrage by Mahanadi Banchao Andolan Committee on July 16.
Thousands of farmers and villagers from Cuttack, Jagatsinghpur and Kendrapada districts took part in the convention. They took out a rally from Jagatpur Chhak to Jobra Barrage.
The committee demanded cancellation of MoUs signed by the state government with 36 industries for providing them water from the Hirakud reservoir and the Mahanadi. Expressing concern over the issue, committee members said that if water of the Mahanadi is given to industries, 15 districts will be affected by it and the worst-affected will be the farmers. The ground water level will also fall drastically, creating a major crisis of water supply.
"The Mahanadi is the lifeline of the people in over 15 districts. It is primarily meant for irrigation. But the state government, without bothering about the plight of farmers, is granting permission to industries," alleged Bijay Mohapatra, member of the committee.
But the BJD MLAs claimed that only the surplus water is being given to industries.