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Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Delay in ERCP, lakes shrinking, birds searching for new places

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A verbal spat is continuing between the Centre and the government of Rajasthan because of the proposed Eastern Canal Project (ERCP), which is aimed at providing water for 13 districts of the state. In the meantime, the effects of the project not beginning can now also be seen on birds, apart from humans. Because of this delay in the initialization of this project, World Heritage Keoladeo National Park (KNP) is not receiving even the amount water mentioned in the signed MoU, from Chambal River. As a result, the lakes here have started drying up and shrinking.

Due to this, a danger can be posed on the migratory birds visiting the national park, their food and water. If this situation prevails, the title of ‘Ramsar site’ can also get snatched away from the national park, which was received in 1990 because of being an international-level wetland. Foreign tourists, too, love to visit the Ramsar site for its natural beauty, but the lakes of Ghana receive very little water from Govardhan Drain, Chambal River, and Panchna Dam, during the monsoon season.

An MoU which states that Ghana’s lakes will receive 62.5 mcft water from Chambal has been signed, but that amount is not reaching the national park. The reduction of water at Ghana has resulted into the migratory birds finding new places now. A huge number of such migratory birds are now seen in wetlands nearby, like Naunera, Saamai Kheda, Bandh baretha, etc. In 2004, on the demands of farmers, the water received by Ghana was stopped, which led to dwindling water levels there, and the lakes started drying up.

Sonakshi Datta
Sonakshi Datta
Journalist who wants to cover the truth which others look the other way from.

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