HC tells water authority to hear farmers on Ujjani dam

Bombay High Court asked Maharashtra Water Resources Regulatory Authority Wednesday to hear Solapur farmers aggrieved by the parched Ujjani dam that has allegedly created a drought-like situation in the district.

Written by Express News Service | Mumbai | Updated: April 16, 2014 11:05 am

Bombay High Court (HC) asked Maharashtra Water Resources Regulatory Authority (MWRRA) Wednesday to hear Solapur farmers aggrieved by the parched Ujjani dam that has allegedly created a drought-like situation in the district.

On April 15,HC had pulled up the state government for failing to appoint members to MWRRA. Last week,assistant government pleader Sandip Shinde said retired bureaucrat Ravi Budhiraja had been appointed chairman of the authority. He told HC Wednesday a second member had also been appointed and the authority was now functional.

Earlier this month,the court asked the state government to replenish Ujjani with water from other dams. It said water in the low-lying dam had sunk below the required level,disrupting irrigation and agricultural activities in a 500-km stretch.

Shinde told HC water from Bhama Askhed and Andra dams had been released but it would take another 15 days to reach Ujjani. He said the state government was,meanwhile,supplying over 500 tankers to drought-hit regions every day.

Mohol Taluka Bahu Uddeshiya Shetkari and Shankar Sathe have moved court alleging that government authorities have failed to implement equitable water distribution. Justices Mohit Shah and M S Sanklecha asked them to make a representation before MWRRA,which has to take a decision in 10 days thereafter.

The authorities,petitioners said,had been informed that water level in the dam had dipped to minus 30 owing to scanty rainfall,making Solapur drought-prone.

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