The National Board for Wildlife
(NBWL) has given its much-awaited clearance to the Ken-Betwa inter-linking of rivers (ILR) project which will benefit Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh.
The benefit will be in terms of meeting irrigation, drinking water and electricity needs of people across six districts in the two states.
As the project requires diversion of forest land of Panna Tiger Reserve, it was required a clearance by the Wildlife Board.
Clearance comprises certain conditions which include integration of nearby sanctuaries including Rani Durgavati and Ranipur with the Panna Tiger Reserve to compensate loss of tiger habitat and complete ban of fresh mining lease in the area.
The Board also instructed the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) to take care of the landscape plan for the area with the help of state forest department and Wildlife Institute of India (WII).
INR 9000 crore IL project could not get initial clearance from NBWL on account of green activists opposing the move.About the Ken-Betwa Project
- Ken-Betwa ILR project will transfer surplus water from the Ken river to the Betwa basin through a 221 km canal.
- The concrete canal will pass through UP's Jhansi, Banda and Mahoba districts of UP and Chhatarpur, Panna and Tikamgarh districts of MP.
- This is one of 30 ILR projects conceived by the Union Government.
- 8650 ha of forest land part of Panna National Park in MP will be submerged due to the project.
- NWDA was set up since 1982, when the ILR plan has been in the offing.