House Committee to take up Mahanadi Tribunal issue

Bhubaneswar: A day after the Centre's refusal over Odisha's demand for constitution of a tribunal to adjudicate Mahanadi water dispute, an all-party meeting was convened by Assembly Speaker Pradip Kumar Amat on Thursday, that decided to constitute a House Committee to chalk out strategy for future course of action on the contentious issue involving Chhattisgarh.

'We had a meeting in the Speaker's chamber on the Mahanadi issue. We decided that a House Committee will be formed about this problem,' Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik told reporters after the meeting.

Expressing his displeasure over the stand taken by the Centre on the matter, the Chief Minister said, 'What the Central Government has done in the Supreme Court suggests that they are no longer a neutral referee in this matter.'

'We will have further discussion with leaders of other political parties to decide our future strategy,' he added.

During a discussion on a motion on Mahanadi issue on Wednesday, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Bikram Keshari Arukha and Government Chief Whip Amar Satpathy had requested the Speaker for constitution of an Assembly panel to decide next course of action after the Centre backtracked from its promise of formation of a tribunal.

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