The Dandeli EIA Fraud
ESG along with Parisara Samrakshana Kendra, Sirsi, ran a campaign to stop a dam proposed across the Kali River by the Murdeshwar Power Corporation Ltd. (MPCL). ESG exposed Ernst and Young, the international consulting firm, for plagiarising a Rapid Environment Impact Assessment (REIA) of Tattihalla Augmentation Scheme in preparing the REIA of the Dandeli dam in an attempt to secure clearances.
In what was termed as the worst ever scam in the environmental decision making history of India, Indian Express provided front page main coverage to the issue in all their country-wide editions on 27 August 2000, leading to a series of further stories across the world. Forced by such circumstances, the Karnataka Government ordered a fresh EIA for the project.
Despite all the controversy, Tata Energy Research Institute (TERI) which was commissioned to conduct this study, produced a new EIA within a month. On review this was found to be based on fraudulent data. In a Public Hearing held on the basis of this report on 3rd January 2001, the deposition made by ESG was considered substantive evidence against the TERI report, and the same was requested to be filed on affidavit by the Deputy Commissioner of Uttara Kannada District. This file can be accessed along with selections from the plagiarised Ernst and Young report.
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