The Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA) leader Medha Patkar on Tuesday alleged that Sardar Sarovar dam rehabilitation scam was next to vyapam scam in scale of corruption and involves financial irregularity to the tune of Rs 1000 to 1500 crore.
Patkar said that the judicial inquiry into the scam was about to conclude and its report would be submitted before the high court on October 8.
Addressing a press conference here along with Dr Sunilam, former MLA and leader Kisan Sangarash Samiti, Badal Saroj, state secretary CPI (M), Medha Patkar said that Sardar Sarovar Dam affected people have been on satyagraha since August 12 in Barwani district, challenging the "illegal completion of dam work that would displace 2.5 lakh people, without due rehabilitation and in gross violation of the law and judgments of the supreme court".
Patkar alleged that around 16000 families have been thrown "out of submergence area" by fraudulent backwater calculations. She said that despite the fact that Madhya Pradesh won't get much benefit from the dam project unlike Gujrat, the height of the dam was being increased from 122 to 139 metres. "The height of the gates has already been increased", she said.
Elaborating the modus operandi of rehabilitation scam, Patkar said that MP government had decided to give Rs 5.5 lakh instead of 5 acre land to the affected people.
"They were asked to get half of this amount (Rs 5.5 lakh) and then show the registry of the 5 acre land they would buy to claim rest of the amount. Many people got half the amount and didn't show the registry. But without their knowledge, fake registries were shown to claim the rest of the amount. The number of such fake registries must be around 2000", she said.
Patkar said that despite the fact that Madhya Pradesh won't get much benefit from the dam project unlike Gujrat, the height of the dam was being increased from 122 to 139 metres. "The height of the gates has already been increased", she said.
She alleged that Modi government was keen to take the dam to its optimum level in the interests of the corporates, automobile industry, Coco Cola company, who will be getting water supply from the project at the cost of the farmers.
"I dare Modi and Shivraj Singh Chouhan to come to walk on foot in the Narmada valley, shun their usual helicopters, and see for themselves the sufferings of the affected people", she said
Patkar said that they also want to dispel the myth of zero balance regarding the rehabilitation of the affected people which was being submitted before the court as affidavits.
"But a footnote in the report of the Narmada Control Authority between 2012-14 shows that 2143 affected families were yet to be given land under rehabilitation", she said.