Environmentalists demand rejig of water accord to revitalise Yamuna
Environmentalists have claimed that only adequate flow of fresh water can redeem the "dead" Yamuna, for which it is imperative to renegotiate the 1994 water sharing agreement between riparian states. Nivedita Khandekar reports.delhi Updated: May 05, 2012 00:55 IST
Environmentalists have claimed that only adequate flow of fresh water can redeem the "dead" Yamuna, for which it is imperative to renegotiate the 1994 water sharing agreement between riparian states.
"The 1994 MoU must be renegotiated so that there is adequate natural flow, at least 50 per cent of the total availability and at no less than 1,000 cusecs. Otherwise, however huge the investment under Yamuna Action Plans be, there is no hope," Manoj Misra, convenor of the Yamuna Jiye Abhiyan appealed in a letter to the Prime Minister after HT's report.
The 1994 memorandum of understanding between riparian states — Delhi, Haryana, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh (and now Uttarakhand too) — was meant for drying up the river of its natural flow for almost nine months a year at Hathni Kund barrage, 200 kms up stream of the national Capital.
In fact, way back in 1996, the Supreme Court had directed to maintain fresh water flow throughout the Yamuna's length. Not just it was not implemented, but there are issues over how much amount constitutes 'fresh' water too.
"The Supreme Court had first decided 10 cusecs water was required based on a Central Water Commission (CWC) report.
However, later the CWC confessed it was an ad-hoc figure. Nobody knows exactly how much fresh water is needed," said Himanshu Thakkar of South Asia Network of Dams River and People (SANDRP).