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Dam Safety bill tabled in Lok Sabha; BJD says subject under state purview

The bill was introduced amid protests by opposition parties including the Congress, TDP and AIADMK on various issues

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Hydro power, dam

The government Wednesday introduced the Dam Safety Bill in the Lok Sabha, a legislation which will help states and union territories adopt uniform procedures to ensure safety of reservoirs.

The bill also provides for surveillance, inspection, operation and maintenance of specified dams to prevent dam failure related disasters.

The bill was introduced amid protests by opposition parties including the Congress, TDP and AIADMK on various issues.

Opposing the introduction of the bill, BJD member Bhartruhari Mahtab said the bill does not come under the purview of the Lok Sabha and Parliament.

"The subject comes under the purview of the state government," he said.

Introducing the bill on behalf of Road and Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari, Water Resources and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Arjun Ram Meghwal said the central government has the legislative competency to introduce the bill.

He said if two states agree, then the Centre has the legislative competency to introduce the bill.

There are over 5,200 large dams in India and about 450 are under construction. In addition, there are thousands of medium and small dams.

Due to lack of legal and institutional safeguards, dam safety is an issue of concern in the country.

First Published: Wed, December 12 2018. 13:15 IST
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