Another election, another churn:Why the Mhadei’s waters are muddy again

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News:Goa government has objected to the Centre announcing that the Kalasa-Banduri drinking water project in Karnataka has been granted Environment Approval.

Facts:

About Kalasa-Banduri Project:

  • The Kalasa-Banduri Nala is a project undertaken by the Government of Karnataka to improve drinking water supply to the Districts of Belagavi, Dharwad and Gadag.
  • It involves building across Kalasa and Banduri, the two tributaries of the Mahadayi river to divert water to the Malaprabha river which supplies the drinking water needs to the three districts of Karnataka.
  • However,Goa government objected against this project because this could harm Goa’s flora and fauna.

Mahadayi River water dispute:

  • Mahadayi or Mhadei is the west-flowing river.It rises in the Western Ghats from the Bhimgad Wildlife Sanctuary in Khanapur taluk of Karnataka’s Belagavi district. 
  • A number of streams join the flow of the river to form the Mandovi which is one of two major rivers that flow through Goa.It joins the Arabian Sea at Panaji.
  • The Mandovi is important for Goa also because it is one of the few sweet-water sources at the state’s disposal. 
  • Most of Goa’s rivers contain salt water and Mandovi ensures water security as well as being an important place to source fish for the state.
  • The Mahadayi Water Disputes Tribunal was set up in 2010.The state governments of Goa, Karnataka and Maharashtra are parties to the tribunal.