Ahmedabad: The Gujarat government will today dedicate the controversial Sardar Sarovar Dam to the nation. For over a decade the dam has invited opposition from project oustees over demands for compensation, NGO and environmentalists.
The dam will benefit Gujarat, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra and operationalise a 66,000km irrigation
The construction of the dam, which is 1,250 metres long, 122 metres high, was completed on December 31, 2005. Though construction bega in 1987, it became the focus of one of the world's longest social and environmental campaigns.
According to Medha Patkar's Narmada Bachao Andolan, the dam will displace 320,000 people -- many of them poor tribal farmers who have not been properly resettled on fertile land, and disrupt the lives of hundreds of thousands more.
Rivalry between states on the water sharing and power generation between, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan and protracted legal battles with activists on the issue of rehabilitation of the project oustees had contributed to the delay in commissioning the dam.