The Nationalist Congress Party on Tuesday alleged that the ruling BJP in Goa was fooling the people of the state on the Mahadayi river dispute with neighbouring Karnataka.
Earlier in the day, leaders of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in Goa claimed that Karnataka officials stopped them when they visited the site of the proposed dams on the river's tributaries that have become a bone of contention between the two states.
“By declaring that they will start a signature campaign to ask the Central Government to withdraw approval given to Karnataka's DPR (detailed project reports) of the Kalasa-Bhandura dam project on Mahadayi, BJP Goa is bluffing the people of Goa,” said NCP national spokesperson Clyde Crasto in a statement.
With the BJP being in power in the Centre as well as in Karnataka and Goa, it did not need a signature campaign to put pressure on the Union government, he said.
Karnataka cannot divert the water of the Mahadayi river because under the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972, no water from Kalasa river can be diverted, the NCP leader claimed.
Dams on the Mahadayi will take way water from Goa and also affect five talukas and five Wildlife sanctuaries in the coastal state adversely, Crasto alleged.
“All three governments can take a decision and withdraw the approval to DPR,” he said.
Earlier, the Aam Aadmi Party's (AAP) Goa chief Amit Palekar claimed that Karnataka officials stopped a group of party leaders during their visit to the site of the Kalasa-Banduri project on Tuesday.
“They stopped us. We were told that we cannot go to the site. However, when we refused to budge and the officials realised that two of the leaders are MLAs, they allowed us to go,” Palekar claimed.
Goa and Karnataka are embroiled in a long-standing dispute over diversion of water from Mahadayi through the construction of dams by Karnataka on the river's tributaries Kalasa and Banduri.
Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant had on Monday said he will soon lead an all-party delegation to Delhi, opposing the approval granted to Karnataka's DPRs for the two dams.