Environmentalists have demanded a fresh environment impact assessment (EIA) before the government goes ahead with the Lakhwar (of the Lakhwar-Vyasi) project in Uttarakhand. The Delhi Jal Board deems it essential for getting additional water for the national Capital.
They have requested the Planning Commission that no dam be permitted on the river Yamuna and the Yamuna basin. This demand comes in wake of the reports that the government of Uttarakhand has written a request letter for funding to the Planning Commission.
Delhi has been hoping for years now to get additional water from three projects— Renuka, Kishau and Lakhwar-Vyasi, all upstream in the Yamuna basin.The project is planned downstream of Lakhwar on the Yamuna, barely 120km downstream of Yamunotri, river’s origin.
No EIA was prepared when the environmental clearance was given to the composite Lakhwar-Vyasi project in 1986. Work stopped after 1992 and Vyasi was separated. “A separate EIA was asked when Vyasi was being considered in 2007. So, the authorities should demand a separate fresh EIA, a public hearing and forest clearance for the Lakhwar project,” asked Himanshu Thakkar of South Asia Network for Dams, River and People.
Stating that Yamuna’s catchments are fragile in hills and unsuited for huge man-made constructions, Manoj Misra of Yamuna Jiye Abhiyaan, has shot off a letter to Montek Singh Ahluwalia. deputy chairperson of the Planning Commission.