New Delhi, Mar 28: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik today flagged several issues related to his state with Water Resources Minister Harish Rawat and demanded that the Centre take steps to resolve the conflict with Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh on the Polavaram project.
Patnaik later told reporters that he has requested Rawat to resolve the conflicting issues of Polavaram project and stop execution of the project till all the critical issues affecting Odisha and other states are settled.
“The minister told me today that he will have a meeting at the Secretary level with the concerned states,” he said.
Confirming this, Rawat said he has called a meeting of the Irrigation Secretaries of Odisha, Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh to discuss the issue.
“Odisha has raised certain objections... This is not a new project. Andhra Pradesh has already invested.... There are some technical issues. We will try to resolve them,” he said.
The Odisha CM also discussed the release of Rs 445 crore to the state towards Central Share under the Accelerated Irrigation Benefit Programme (AIPB) before March 31, 2013.
He also demanded release under Command Area Development and Water Management Programme and Rs 77 crore under Repair, Renovation and Restoration Scheme to the state. Rawat said the RRR projects will be put up for approval in the Cabinet soon.
Odisha also sought approval for 440 projects under the RRR of water bodies schemes, sanctioned in April 2010.
Patnaik sought extension of time to enable completion of 11 major and medium irrigation projects in the state. The Chief Minister said he has been raising the issue of giving “special status” to Odisha at several forums.