Jabalpur: A Jabalpur High Court bench presided over Chief Justice A.M. Khanwilkar today responded to a petition filed by Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA) on Indira Sagar and Omkareshwar canal project by issuing an order asking the State Government and Narmada Valley Development Authority (NVDA) to start the process under a clear-cut policy, as per the Land Acquisition Act, and compensate those suffering losses due to crop damage caused by leakage in the canal.
The Jabalpur High Court has fixed April 7 as the next date of hearing in the petitions on Narmada canal and illegal sand mining and other related petitions.
Narmada Bachao Andolan (Save Narmada Campaign) leader Medha Patkar argued the case on behalf of those affected by the Narmada dam, including tribals, farmers and other families residing in the Narmada valley.
The court took cognisance of the issue of deaths and other health related problems due to the Narmada canal project and ordered that the special panel set up by the Ministry of Environment, which is scheduled to tour Badwah tehsil in Khargone district of Madhya Pradesh on March 30-31, should visit Atarsumba, Guradia and Piprikheda villages for an on-the-spot probe. The court has sought a report on the findings of this team at the next hearing.
During today’s hearing, according to an NBA statement, the NVDA lawyer RN Singh gave the assurance that the canal related work in fully irrigated villages along the Narmada River will be suspended till the court gives its final decision.
The NBA has presented a list of 88 villages affected by the Sardar Sarovar and Maheshwar dams.