Kolkata, April 16 (IANS) The Central government is in favour of a single tribunal for speedy settling of inter-state water disputes, Union Minister of State for Water Resources Arjun Ram Meghwal said here on Monday.
The first conference of five eastern states – Bihar, Jharkhand, West Bengal, Odisha and Chhattisgarh – was held here on Monday with an objective to resolve water disputes among these states.
“Instead of having state-wise multiple tribunals, the Centre is proposing for a single tribunal so that inter-state water disputes can be settled at the earliest. The decision of the single tribunal should also be mandatory,” said Meghwal.
According to him, water disputes between five eastern states were pending for a long time and development of irrigation projects were not progressing on the expected lines.
“We had asked the respective states to submit their agenda and subsequently, we have examined their proposals and prepared a detailed note on that. We have discussed all the issues in detail.”
He said the Supreme Court has clearly said water is part of “common pool resources” and considered a national asset.
Meghwal focussed on the necessity to rejuvenate irrigation in this region, highlighting the requirement of upgrading the irrigation facility in every state to achieve greater production of food crops.
He also pointed out that the meeting is going to bridge the gap between states so far as water sharing issues are concerned.