Authorities keep vigil over Virdi dam issue


Barely days after the Tillari water project was stalled by residents in Sindhudurg-Maharashtra, it was now the turn of villagers of Virdi-Maharashtra to stop work on the Virdi dam project to demand an increase in compensation to the affected people.
Authorities in Goa will be closely following developments around the Virdi dam, as it will have a direct bearing on the water level at the Walwanti River in Sanquelim.
It may be recalled that the Maharashtra government wants to set up a dam at Virdi-Dodamarg since the last few years to satisfy the water needs of farmers from Virdi.
The dam-affected residents from Virdi had earlier submitted a representation to the collector at Dodamarg demanding an increase in compensation. 
On Tuesday, the villagers under the banner of ‘Sateri Nagrik Kruti Samiti’ submitted another memorandum to the collector at Dodamang to press for their demands.
Later, the residents went to the site at Virdi and stopped the work.
“There are about 40 families affected with the dam and they claim that six families are not given any compensation. Their demand is also to increase the compensation because of recession,” said environmentalist, Rajendra Kerkar.
“The Virdi Dam is one of the sources of water for the Walwanti River at Sanquelim and if the dam is built, water level at the Walwanti River will decrease,” claimed Kerkar.
“It could also increase the possibility of floods in Sanquelim. If water from the Anjunem and Virdi dams is released at the same time, the low-lying area of Sanquelim could get flooded during the rainy season,” added Kerkar. [H]