“The water level in Hirakud reservoir has gone down by 5 fit in just a month of non-monsoon season. The water level has declined to 621 ft now from 626.17 ft a month back. The Mahanadi has dried at all places in Odisha. The situation will worsen in coming months,” apprehended Mohapatra.
The former Minister said Mahanadi is running out of water as water inflow from its upper catchment areas has almost stopped. “Not a single drop of water is coming from barrages and dams constructed in Chhattisgarh. Merely 1,200 to 1,500 cusec water from Ib and Veden rivers is entering into the reservoir only,” said Mohapatra.
He slammed the State Government for failing to construct a single barrage or dam on the Mahanadi during the last five years since water dispute erupted between Odisha and Chhattisgarh in 2016.
“Mahanadi and all its branch rivers have almost dried. Situation will worsen further. People of 16 districts will not get water for agriculture and drinking purposes in coming days of the ongoing non- monsoon season,” Mohapatra warned and demanded that the Odisha Government soon hold discussions with the Chhattisgarh Government to resolve the imminent situation.
He too demanded that the Government place the present-day non-monsoon situation before the Mahanadi Tribunal at the earliest.