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Green Tribunal allows raising of water level in Maheshwar Dam

Aug 14, 2012

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has allowed the Shree Maheshwar Hydel Power Corporation Ltd (SMHPCL) to increase the water level at the Maheshwar dam, which is a part of the Narmada Valley Development Project, from the current 145.76 mtrs to 154 mtrs.

The tribunal also gave permission to commence generation of 40 MW of electricity. The Judgement by a bench of justices A.S Naidu and G.K Pandey set aside a petition that sought to stop SMHPCL from increasing the water level in the dam.

The bench said: “After going through the ToR we are satisfied that adequate measures have been taken by the Ministry of Environment and Forest (MOEF) for the protection of the villagers.” The NGT Act 2010 was set up in 2010 for effective and expeditious disposal of cases relating to environmental protection and conservation of forests and natural resources. It is a specialised body equipped with the necessary expertise to handle environmental disputes involving multi-disciplinary issues.

The order allows SMHPCL to generate 40 MW electricity by increasing the water level for a period of three months. ML Gupta, former chairman of the Tehri Dam & Hydro Electric Project, said: “Technically it is important to increase the water level in any hydro power project. A minimum pressure has to be built through water falling from a height to run the turbine effectively.”

The company said that this project will help develop the area with better amenities. The Maheshwar Project is expected to reduce peak-power shortage in Madhya Pradesh by over 25 per cent as well as improve the socio-economic conditions in the region. The Madhya Pradesh State Electricity Board is the designated executing agency for R&R of the Maheshwar Project.

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