Goa charges Maharashtra with blackmail

Last Updated: Sat, Dec 22, 2012 16:00 hrs

Panaji, Dec 22 (IANS) Goa Saturday accused Maharashtra of blackmailing it on releasing water from the Tillari canal and also claimed that it is violating an MoU inked between the two states.

Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar said he will speak to his Maharashtra counterpart Prithviraj Chavan to find a solution to the issue.

The dam on Tillari River is a joint venture between Goa and Maharashtra governments.

"The Maharashtra government's decision not to release water is in violation of the MoU (memorandum of understanding between the two states. I will speak to Prithviraj Chavan (Maharashtra chief minister) about it," Parrikar told reporters here.

He further said the protests near the Tillari canal by villagers in south Maharashtra, are a result of a fallout of internal feud between the ruling Congress and its partner, the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP).

"They should not try to blackmail Goa. We will give them a fitting reply if they do. We have to have our share of the water and we will take whatever steps required to make sure that is the case," Parrikar said.

The Rs 1,612 crore Tillari Dam project, located in the Sindhudurg district of Maharashtra is a joint undertaking by the both the state governments and was commissioned in May 2009 and is aimed at fulfilling the potable water needs of the south Maharashtra and north Goa region.

The construction of the dam, which was delayed considerably resulted in displacement of 11 villages and 1,236 families.

A Maharashtra village affected by the construction of the dam was even relocated across the border in Goa.

The villagers have now claimed that they had been assured government jobs in Goa, back in the 1990s and the promise has not been fulfilled.

More from Sify: