Odisha-C’garh Mahanadi row: Centre hints at formation of tribunal

Bhubaneswar: The Centre indicated in favour of constituting a tribunal for resolution of the dispute between Chhattisgarh and Odisha over sharing of Mahanadi waters in the Supreme Court today.

The Centre gave the indication during the hearing on Mahanadi water sharing dispute at the apex court in which the Centre, Chhattisgarh and Odisha stated their respective stands over the issue.

“The Central government has said it that they are constituting a water disputes tribunal. They will make the statement formally on 2nd August,” informed Odisha government’s counsel Mahesh Agarwal.

The state government had moved the Supreme Court over the Mahanadi water dispute.

The state government had sought a stay on construction of projects upstream of Mahanadi by Chhattisgarh government.

The state government has also written to the Centre for constitution of an inter-state tribunal under section 3 of the Interstate River Water Disputes Act, 1956 (IRWD Act) to resolve the Mahanadi water sharing dispute.

Under section 4 of the IRWD Act, a tribunal is to be constituted within one year of making an application for the same but the Centre has brought a bill in the Parliament seeking to constitute a single tribunal for all inter-state river disputes.

Since the bill is pending clearance by the Parliament, the Centre has sought more time from the apex court to file its response in the matter.

The next date of hearing in the matter has been fixed for August 2.

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