Dehra Dun: Uttarakhand Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna has urged social activists Avdhash Kaushal and Leeladhar Jagudi to postpone their resolution to return their Padamshree awards till the Centre takes a final decision on the power projects issue.

Social activists Avdhash Kaushal and Leeladhar Jagudi were honoured with Padamshrees for their valuable contribution to society, and so they should wait for returning their awards to the government till the Centre takes a final decision on the issue, Bahuguna said in a statement.

Stating his government favoured construction of hydel power projects on river Ganga, Bahuguna said he had talked with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Union Power Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde to take a positive decision on the hydel projects.

He hoped the Prime Minister would keep in mind the requirements and interests of Uttarakhand before taking a final decision on the issue.

Kaushal and Jagudi along with pro-dam activists had observed a fast in May last in support of the construction and revival of scrapped projects on river Ganga asking the central and state governments not to close them under the pressure of environmentalists and religious leaders.

The two had also threatened to return their Padamshrees on August 15 next in protest if their voices were not heard.

"This is ironical that Uttarakhand is facing acute shortage of electricity while the power projects of the state are being abandoned under the pressure of Prof G D Agrawal and other so called environmentalists," said Kaushal, who heads Dehra Dun-based NGO Rural Litigation and Entitlement Kendra.

The activists had claimed that scrapping of hydel power projects was also opposed by the local people as the decision has not only deprived the people of the area from development but also snatched their jobs from them.


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