Availing surplus water to the regions in Kathua and its surrounding, the Central and the State government has unanimously decided to block 531 Million Cubic Meters (MCM) water which would have flown to Pakistan with the construction of Ujh Multipurpose Project and divert it to Punjab, Haryana and, if possible, even to Rajasthan with the construction of canals.
The decision was taken after a high-level meeting comprising of Governor Satya Pal Malik, Union Minister of Transport and Water Resources, Nitin Gadkari and Dr Jitendra Singh and top officials from J&K. It was taken into consideration as it was discovered that out of 781 Million Cubic Meters (MCM) water that the project was scheduled to generate, 531 MCM would have flown to Pakistan as Kathua and surroundings had the capacity to get 250 MCM water only.
Kathua as a region is set to benefit immensely in terms of irrigation with construction of canal and power generation from Ujh project, took up the matter with both Central and State Governments after which the high-level meeting was held in New Delhi. After the discussion it was decided that a roadmap would be devised immediately to block flow of 531 MCM water to Pakistan after construction of the project and instead spread this water to neighbouring State of Punjab followed by Haryana and, if possible, even up to Rajasthan as it has been observed that only 250 MCM water would reach Kathua and surroundings.
They added that the officers of Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab and Central Governments have been asked to devise strategy to facilitate use of surplus water by three Indian States of Haryana, Punjab and Rajasthan and prevent its flow to Pakistan. The officers would meet in New Delhi on February 14 and finalize the strategy.
Pointing out that both Central and State Governments want foundation laying of Ujh project before imposition of Model Code of Conduct, which is likely by the end of February or start of March, the officials have been asked to devise the strategy keeping the deadline in mind.
The Centre as well as State Governments were confident that foundation stone of Ujh project would be laid well before the Model Code of Conduct is imposed to give pace to the project and ensure its completion within stipulated time of six years (from the day the project is launched). Total cost of the project has been pegged at Rs 5850 crore, of which Rs 4919.94 crore is irrigation component and rest is the construction cost. The high-level meeting of Central and State Government officials also reviewed various other projects, which are being undertaken in Jammu and Kashmir with the help of Central Government.
COURTESY :- NEWS BHARATI