Foot march to protest raising height of Sardar Sarovar dam begins
About 200 people from the Sardar Sarovar dam affected areas started a foot march from Khalghat in Barwani district to protest increase in height of the dam, allegedly without completing rehabilitation process.
The protest is led by the Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA) with support of activists and organisations from different parts of country. The foot march would conclude at Rajghat in Barwani, about 85km from Khalghat, on August 12 in the form of an indefinite sit-in.
NBA has said that the process of increasing height of the Sardar Sarovar Dam from 122 metres to 138.68 metres is continuing and due to this 245 villages would face total submergence as backwaters of the dam would spread up to 214 kilometer jeopardizing the life of thousands of families in this belt.
On the first day, the protestors covered villages like Pipalda Gadi, Sala, Nimbola, Khujawa and Dharampuri town in Dharampuri tehsil.
NBA activist Meera (uses only first name) told HT that villages in Dharampuri tehsil have been removed from the list of villages that would be submerged by the SSP, although evidences suggest that all these villages would come under submergence after the height of the dam is increased.
“These issues were discussed during street corner meetings at the various villages held on first day of the foot march,” she said.
She added that the Gujarat disaster preparedness plan for this monsoon shows that the water at Khalghat would reach up to 149.84 metres (above sea level) in case of heavy rainfall.
In contrast, the Narmada Valley Development Authority (NVDA) has claimed that the water level at Khalghat would not go beyond 144.92 metres at any cost. “This discrepancy means that lives and lands of thousands of villagers in the area is at stake,” Meera said.
The participants of foot march also remembered Hiroshima disaster (August 6 is Hiroshima Day) and said that they would not any disaster happen in the submergence area of SSP.
Medha Patkar of NBA, anti-mining activist Kailash Meena from Rajasthan, Chinmay Mishra of Sarvodaya Press, Indore, Yashwant Bapu of Maharashtra who exposed corruption in sugar factories, members of NGO Programme for Social Action, Delhi and Ghar Bachao Ghar Banao Andolan, Mumbai participated in the foot march.
Read: NBA to launch protest over dam height
The ruling DMK's key initiative aimed at women, providing them free bus travel, should not be confined to a "narrow" aspect of freebies but it is an economic revolution, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M K Stalin said on Friday. The scheme has ensured an 8-12 per cent savings for the families of the beneficiaries, he said while chairing the third meeting of the Tamil Nadu State Planning Commission here.
Islamic Centre of India here organised 'Trianga Yatra' led by its chairman Maulana Khalid Rashid Farangi Mahali on Friday as part of 'Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav' to mark the 75th Independence Day of the country. Several Muslim youths participated in the 'Tiranga Yatra' led by Mahali. Maulana Khalid Rashid Farangi Mahli said that our national flag teaches us our duties towards our country.
Uttar Pradesh is witnessing a parallel Tiranga (tricolour) campaign —one by the Bharatiya Janata Party and its government in the state and the other by the Samajwadi Party, the main opposition party. The BJP government had announced its “Har Ghar Tiranga (national flag on every home)” campaign from August 13 to 15 as part of the Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav (75 years of India's independence).
Days after the arrest of Shrikant Tyagi for abusing and assaulting a woman at a high rise in Sector 93B, Noida, and alleged harassment of the accused wife by the police, the Tyagi community in the state has decided to close ranks. The community members from 11 districts of the state met on Thursday to form 'Sanyukt Tyagi Swabhiman Morcha' to protect the honour and fight those who were trying to defame the entire community.
A brainstorming workshop on “Space-based solutions for effective management of stubble burning and air pollution” held at Punjab Remote Sensing Centre on August 10, under the aegis of ISRO-DMSP, culminated on Friday wherein 100 officers from different departments, universities, and farmers participated. Experts from PPCB, department of agriculture, department of soil and water conservation, IIT Ropar, NGOs, industries and Punjab Remote Sensing Centre shared their studies to tackle stubble burning.