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Appeal to move international fora on Dams

By Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, Oct 10 � Seattle-based aeronautical engineer Arati Bora Barua has appealed to the Governments and the people of the country to move the appropriate international fora to keep Chinese bids to dam the Brahmaputra in check.

Barua, who has been keeping a watch on the Chinese bids to dam the Brahmaputra for the past several years, said at a press meet here that if the Chinese authorities are allowed to dam the Yarlung Tsangpo � the Tibetan part of the Brahmaputra � it would require only a decade or two to turn Assam into a dreary desert.

She claimed that unlike the claims made by our Governments, the Chinese dams proposed to be constructed on the Brahmaputra are �run-with-the river� ones, not the �run-of-the river� ventures. After completion, these projects would dry up the Brahmaputra in the downstream areas. The consequence of reducing the Brahmaputra into a dry channel is anybody's guess, she said.

She also alleged that climate of the NE region is undergoing a change due to the Chinese developmental projects on the Himalayas, particularly on the Himalayan rivers. Bizarre incidents of flood are also occurring in this part of the country because of the Chinese attempts to dam the Himalayan rivers and diverting their waters to some other rivers flowing through the NE region of India.

Moreover, the Chinese bid to use the Himalayan rivers to suit their interest, is making NE India face a �boiling frog syndrome�, she said. In no other part of the globe, a river is dammed at its source. But here in this part of the globe, the Chinese authorities have come up with proposals to dam the Yarlung Tsangpo at its source, she said.

It needs mention here that a lot of media reports are indicating that the Chinese Government has been planning a number of dams on the Yarlung Tsangpo. A couple of days back, a report suggested that the Chinese authorities have planned as many as 23 dams on the river.

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