Narmada Bachao Andolan
58, Gandhi Marg, Badwani, MP

Delhi Camp: 011-6680883

Press Note - February 6, 2002

Eminent Persons Intervene in the Matter of Narmada Dam
NBA issues legal notice to R&R Sub-group of NCA

Expressing shock and concern over the upcoming meetings to decide upon the
height of Sardar Sarovar (Narmada) Dam, a few eminent persons have written
to the Prime Minister today (6.2.2002). This include, Shri Kuldip Nayyar
M.P., Adv. Shanti Bhushan, former Law Minister, Shri Surendra Mohan, former
M.P., Smt Mohini Giri, former Chairwoman - National Commission for
Women, Admiral (Retd) Ramdas, Jst (Retd) Rajinder Sacchar and Swami
Agnivesh. Meanwhile, NBA has issued legal notice to the concerned
authorities for failing to implement the Award in resettling the affected
adivasis and farmers and for having violated the Supreme Court judgement.

In a letter they have stated that any further construction ".would thus
entail an enormous violation of the human rights of the oustees and would
also violate the orders of the Supreme Court.". They have also brought to
the notice of the PM that there are hundreds of oustees affected at the
present dam height without having been resettled. Giving details of the
dismal possibility of resettlement they have stated: "In fact the M.P.
government has expressed its helplessness in giving land for land and has
sought a modification of the award to do away with the provision of land
for land. Such a modification of the award would not only be violative of
the human rights of the oustees, it would also undercut the basis on which
the Supreme Court had permitted the construction of the Dam."

Reacting to the intervention of the PM they added that ".we found it quite
surprising and shocking to read that you are reported to have directed that
the Dam should be taken to a height of 100 M by June 2002. Perhaps you were
not properly briefed by the officials concerned. We would therefore request
you to reconsider your decision and issue corrective instructions, lest
your authority be used to perpetrate a grave wrong and a serious violation
of the Narmada Tribunal's Award and the human rights of the oustees".

Legal Notice to R&R Sub Group

NBA has issued legal notices to the Resettlement sub-group of the Narmada
Control Authority for dereliction of duty in having failed to ensure proper
resettlement of affected families to date. The notice also warns the
Resettlement Sub-group from sanctioning any further construction as this
would imply the violation of the resettlement laws governing the project
i.e. as per the Narmada Water Disputes Tribunal Award and also constitute
contempt of Supreme Court directives in the Narmada case.

As of today more than 3216 families affected at the present height of the
dam (90m) remain without any resettlement. At 100m a further 3589 (official
figures) would be affected without having been resettlement. It must be
remembered that as per the provisions in the NWDTA and upheld by the
Supreme Court resettlement MUST precede any construction and that under no
circumstances can the properties of affected people be submerged without
having being resettled. The Resettlement Sub-group is scheduled to meet on
the 8th of February to review the resettlement at various levels of the SSP.

People in the valley will never allow this injustice to happen.

Clifton D'Rozario
Pratibha Shinde