Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh on Saturday said the Mahanadi water issue is being politicised only to divert attention from core issues ahead of the panchayat polls in Odisha."The people in Odisha want to know what steps have been taken to address migration problem, poverty, electricity, road and farming issues. But they are raising the Mahanadi issue at the time of Panchayat polls to divert attention from the core issues," he said.Addressing a gathering during the campaign for BJP in Sundargarh district Singh said, "There can't be a dispute over Mahanadi. There would be no issue in future as well. Mahanadi unites the people of Odisha and Chhattisgarh. It doesn't divide them," the Chief Minister said.
He said while Chhattisgarh uses only 4 per cent of Mahanadi water, Odisha uses only 14 per cent and the rest 82 per cent goes to the sea unutilized.The Odisha government can use the entire water, which goes to sea every year, he added.Informing that Chhattisgarh has marched ahead in terms of development in past 16 years, Singh said there was lack of eagerness to perform in Odisha despite the state having abundant natural resources.The Chief Minister appealed the people to vote for Bharatiya Janata Party to bring changes in the state.Meanwhile, the BJD workers staged a demonstration at the district headquarters in Sundargarh protesting the visit of the Chhattisgarh Chef Minister.