Water Resources Minister Filipe Nery Rodrigues on Friday said that all rivers and water bodies will be inventoried and notified under the Ground Water Regulation Act in an attempt to preserve them for posterity.
Replying on demands of the water resources department in the state assembly, Rodrigues said the government will amend the Ground Water Regulation Act and the Irrigation Act to protect and preserve the rivers and water bodies in the state.
Rodrigues said the government has already taken a major initiative on water conservation under the Jal Shakti Abhiyan of the central government, keeping in mind Goa’s water requirements in the next 50 years.
He said that framing of a state water resources policy is under consideration.
“It is high time the government gave thrust on water conservation and flood
preventing measures… It is the endeavour of my department to take up work for
dredging of rivers and nullahs so that
floodwater drains out,” he said, adding that 1200 cubic metre of groundwater is available which must be conserved for Goa’s posterity.
The water harvesting scheme needs some modifications, he observed, adding that the matter will be taken up with the town and country planning department.
Stating that during April-May this year the department pumped out over 500 cubic metre of water from mining pits for irrigation purpose, Rodrigues said the government intends to set up permanent pumping units in some mining pits.
The WRD Minister told the House that the government will adopt measures to preserve and protect the Bondvale lake located in the St Cruz constituency, warning officials of the department that he would take action against them for furnishing wrong information.
He said that safety measures are already in place for the Selaulim dam, and that a central team of experts regularly conducts safety audit of the dam.
The issue of rehabilitation of the Selaulim dam oustees will be resolved soon, he promised.
Rodriuges told the state legislative assembly that the government will not leave stone unturned to protect the interest of the state vis-à-vis the Mhadei water dispute.
He informed that the Supreme Court will conduct hearing on August 5 on the special leave petition on the Mhadei water dispute.
When senior Congress MLA Pratapsingh Rane brought to the notice of the House that Karnataka is gearing up at Kankumbi for diverting the Mhadei water, the minister said the state government has already filed a contempt petition against the neighbouring state before the Mhadei Water Disputes Tribunal and also the SLP in the SC.