Centre fills up Sardar Sarovar Dam even as state warns thousands still in submergence area -Nihar Gokhale
-IndiaSpend.com/ Land Conflict Watch
Barwani, Dhar (Madhya Pradesh): Two middle-aged men struggled to carry an old steel cupboard, which looked like it had never been moved, from a house in south-western Madhya Pradesh in central India.
Clothes and kitchenware packed in old sarees were placed outside. The house next door in Nisarpur village was half submerged under the rising waters of the Narmada. The ground floors of most shops in a parallel lane were under water, and moss-covered. Streetlights stuck out of the water at odd places, as people scurried from one lane to another to help others load their belongings onto a pick-up truck.
On the other bank of the swelling river, in Chhota Barda village, four government officers hunched over a low table. Facing them was a queue of more than 100 people who stood clutching rolls of letters and documents that prove their identity.
As people walked to the table, the officers noted down their names and asked questions to determine why they had not left the village--they should have been rehabilitated long ago because their village fell in the submergence zone--a large area which would be flooded once the Sardar Sarovar Dam, about 140 km away in the neighbouring state of Gujarat, was filled up to its full height of 138.68 meters, roughly as tall as a 40-storey building.
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