The four parties - CPI, CPI(M), Forward Bloc and SP - in a joint statement said they would not allow Posco to use water meant for farmers and used for drinking by the people of undivided Cuttack district.

The statement signed by Dibakar Nayak (CPI), Janardan Pati (CPI-M), Purnachandra Padhi (Forward Bloc) and Rabi Behera (SP) said the state government had in 2006 withdrawn its decision to allow 125 cusec of water from Naraj in Mahanadi river.

"Then in 2006, the state government had told Posco to arrange water for its use in view of public unrest. Now after 2014 polls, the state government has again allowed Posco to draw water from Mahanadi," Nayak said.

Pati said allowing Posco to draw water from Mahanadi river would disturb irrigation in Cuttack, Jagatsinghpur, Jajpur, Kendrapara and Puri districts.

Similarly, the farmers of Cuttack sadar, Biridi, Raghunathpur, Tittol, Jagtsinghpur, Ersama and Balikuda would be affected if Posco draws water from Hansua river, he said.

Meanwhile, Water Resources Secretary Suresh Chandra Mohapatra said Posco is allowed to draw water from Hansua river for construction of its mega project near Paradip and water from Mahanadi for use in the steel plant.

(Agencies)

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