The case deals with the problems faced while building a dam across the rivers Lokmata and Sadmata in northern Gujarat and further issues encountered while a proposal is made to raise the control levels of it. The objective of the case is to maximize the irrigation potential of the dam while respecting the religious sentiments of the people. The options are either to implement the former plan in its present form or the latter by convincing the people of its benefits and deal with the issues faced. The conclusion is to try and implement the new plan resulting in maximization of irrigation and revenues.
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The setting of the case is in North Gujarat in the period just after independence. The government has proposed to build an earthen dam across the rivers Lokmata and Sadmata to improve irrigational facilities in three districts. India was then a primarily agrarian economy and agriculture was largely dependent on rain and North Gujarat being a water starved area would benefit immensely from the construction of this dam by making water available all throughout the year. The authorities have made a new proposal to raise the level of dam which would result in the submergence of the Bhavnath temple located in the projected reservoir and this has resulted in the villagers strongly opposing the project. The central issue that the Bhavnath Temple Case deals with is the balance between economic development and religious sentiments of the people. Under Plan A the dam was to impound 4700 million cu.ft of water irrigating 92,000 acres of land at a cost of 1.7 crores. It was expected that the increase in agricultural production would be 30,400 tons every year and this was valued at 1.4774 crores. The new plan (Plan B) called for raising the irrigation potential of the dam by raising the level the three control levels. The dam would now hold 5,700 million cu.ft of water and was estimated to cost 1.9 crores....