The Supreme Court today took exception to the union water resources department secretary not filing an affidavit in a matter relating to the Polavaram Project in Andhra Pradesh despite its order and directed him to do so in three days.
The bench had on February 15 asked the secretary of the department and several states, including Odisha and Telangana, to file "specific affidavits" stating they were bound by the 1980 award of Godavari Water Disputes Tribunal which had adjudicated the river water utilisation dispute among the basin states of Godavari and Krishna.
The court, which was hearing a matter related to Indira Sagar Polavaram Project on river Godavari in Andhra Pradesh, was today informed that these states have filed their affidavits as per the direction.
He said the capacity of the project was scheduled to be 36 lakh cusec but the design was for 50 lakh cusecs which would lead to submergence of a large portion of area.
Odisha had earlier raised the issue of submergence of a number of villages in the state due to the construction of Polavaram project.
According to the tribunal's verdict, the agreements arrived between the riparian states at the sub-basin level were vetted by the states of the entire Godavari basin and no state could back out of the total tribunal award.
Odisha had earlier told the apex court they were not pressing their plea seeking blanket injunction for Andhra Pradesh from proceeding with construction of the Polavaram project, but it should be done in accordance with the 1980 tribunal award and other laws.
The petition has claimed that the project will submerge about 600 habitations in Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Odisha and Telangana and also about 8,000 acres of forest and 500 acres of the wild life sanctuary.
The Ministry of Environment and Forest had given a direction to stop the construction work of the project on February 8, 2011, but had later kept its own order in abeyance.
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