The “Jal Satyagraha” protest led by Narmada Bachao Aandolan founder Medha Patkar, demanding rehabilitation of the 40,000 families affected by the Sardar Sarovar Dam, entered the third day on Sunday. Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the inter-state Sardar Sarovar Dam in Gujarat’s Narmada district on Sunday. With the water level of the dam steadily rising, it is speculated that one town and 192 villages in the region will be submerged under water. Around 40,000 families in the affected villages would have to leave their homes as the danger escalates.
Patkar has alleged that the affected families have not been rehabilitated or paid compensation despite the Supreme Court order. Describing the development as “unfortunate”, she has demanded that water supply in the dam be stopped till the rehabilitation was completed.
Taking on the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Patkar said the lives of thousands of families in Madhya Pradesh have been put at stake for electoral gains in the coming Gujarat assembly polls. On Saturday, around 30 women led by Patkar continued their sit-in on the banks of the Narmada river at Chota Barda village in Dhar where the water level is gradually rising.