Crisis of water in Dahej – Vilayat areas, locals-industry representatives meet Chief Minister

Bharuch: MLA of Vagra along with representatives from local farmers and industries of Dahej-Vilayat area of Bharuch district met Gujarat Chief Minister in Gandhingar to urge him for release of Narmada water from Sardar Sarovar Narmada dam. They also sought launch of the works for Bhadbhut barrage project speedily and ensure satisfactory water supply to Dahej – Vilayat area industries and farmers.

For last over a week, the areas of Dahej – Vilayat and 10 villages of Vagra are facing shortage of water due to lack of release of water in nearby river Narmada from Sardar Sarovar dam.

River Narmada is all-season river but due to storage of water in Sardar Sarovar Narmad dam and lack of release, the downstream areas of Bharuch district are water starved. On earlier occasions, Narmada dam would witness overflow in monsoon and downstream belt would get water, but last season due to installation and closure of gates over Narmada dam, downstream portion of river Narmada which passes through Bharuch district remained dry.

Due to high tide of full-moon night, brackish sea water enters into river Narmada and converts river bed saline.

Over 200 industries of Dahej – Vilayat industrial township area and 10 villages are facing water supply problem for last over a week in this situation.

Representatives from industry and farmers sought construction of temporary structure such as causeway to stop sea water from entering river Narmada. Another demand pressed was for launch of works for Bhadbhut barrage speedily.

If actions not taken in coming days, ground water table will further convert into saline, the land will be difficult or impossible for agricultural use and due to closure of industries, unemployment will be on rise, the Chief Minister was told.

The Chief Minister in his response to this representation opined that the State needs to reserve Narmada water in Sardar Sarovar dam in anticipation of water crisis in summer. The government stand is – first priority to drinking water, second to agricultural supply and third to industries.

The Chief Minister suggested industries to set up a distillery plant. He said Narmada dam after increase of its storage capacity was not full upto top level. Karjan dam too was not full. In such situation, release of Narmada water in downstream areas was difficult.

The current status

Over 200 industries and villages are supplied water from Nand intec well, activated by GIDC while Angareshwar intec well is non functional. Full moon day high tide was on 2nd January following which the Arabian sea water reached 55 km inside the river Narmada near Nand village. GIDC had to shut water supply for Dahej – Vilayat industries and 10 villages due to this development. Nand and Angareshwar intec well were shut. 8 days after this, there has been just 50% improvement in situation. Due to lack of release of water from Sardar Sarovar Narmada dam, the salinity erupted upto Nand village has not washed away. For last 8 days, there has been 50% cut in water supply. There has been 600 cu sec water release from Godbole gate but according to Vagra MLA Arunsinh Rana it is insufficient. He has appealed that more water needs to be released till completion of Bhadbhut barrage.


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