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The Hindu on indiaserver.com : 'Water dispute will be amajor issue in future'

Online edition of India's National Newspaper on indiaserver.com
Thursday, February 22, 2001


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'Water dispute will be amajor issue in future'

By Our Staff Reporter

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM, FEB. 21. If a third world war breaks out, it will be in the name of water, the renowned environmentalist, Mr. Sunderlal Bahuguna, has said.

Inaugurating "Nadhi vandhanam," an awareness programme for the protection and conservation of rivers organised by the Swadeshi Science Movement and the Environmental Resource Research Centre here today, Mr. Bahuguna said water disputes would be a major issue in the future. People are diverting rivers according to their convenience, he said.

This has led to a major crisis throughout the country. Constructing dams is no permanent solution to the crisis. Mr. Bahuguna said that he had been fighting consistently for the last 11 years against the construction of a dam in Bhageerathy River.

Industry and agriculture are the two sectors with high utilisation of water. Though the consumption of water is very high and the availability coming down, one cannot find any alternative. Extensive afforestation is the only answer to the issue, he said. Kerala has anticipated the danger and has begun to take remedial steps in this direction. The youth too are aware of the issue, he said.

Even 50 years after gaining independence, equality still has not become a reality in India. Mr. Bahuguna said he came to Kerala to see how equality prevailed in the State ruled by a communist Ministry.

The "Nadhi vandhanam" convener, Dr. G.N.A. Nair, welcomed and the chairman, Dr. M.P. Nair, presided. Prof. Vishnu Narayana Namboodiri, the film director, Mr. T.K. Rajiv Kumar, and the actor, Mr. Suresh Gopi, offered felicitations. A street play, "Nadhi vandhanam" was staged by Abhinaya Drama Study and Research Centre.

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