Ken-Betwa Link Project:
The Ken-Betwa river interlinking project will lead to the submergence of a major portion of the core area of the Panna Tiger Reserve in Madhya Pradesh, triggering a major loss of the tiger and its major prey species such as chital and sambar, according to a new study.
- The project may incur an estimated loss of 58.03 square kilometres (10.07 per cent) of critical tiger habitat (CTH) in the reserve.
- There will be an indirect loss of 105.23 sq km of CTH because of habitat fragmentation and loss of connectivity due to submergence, the study.
- The total area submerged would be 86.50 sq km, of which 57.21 sq km lies within Panna Tiger Reserve. This will account for 65.50 per cent of total submergence.
- The area that will be submerged due to the KBRIL Project has a rich floral density and diversity. Ungulates such as sambar, chital, blue bull and wild boar are found here.
- The Union Cabinet has approved the funding and implementation of the Ken-Betwa river interlinking project at a cost of ₹44,605 crore at the 2020-21 price level.
- The Centre would fund ₹39,317 crore for the project, with ₹36,290 crore as a grant and ₹3,027 crore as a loan.
- The project involves transferring of water from the Ken river to the Betwa river through the construction of Daudhan dam and a canal linking the two rivers, the Lower Orr Project, Kotha Barrage and the Bina Complex Multipurpose Project.