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Proposed diversion scheme threatens forests, ecologists warn

India’s Mahadai Valley forests, the only habitat of the Wroughtons free-tailed bat, are under threat, according to environmental activists in the country’s Karnataka state.

They say the evergreen forest on the Western Ghats in Belgaum district is threatened by the resurrection of the Karnataka state government’s proposal to divert Mahadai river water for irrigation and power production.

The proposed diversion scheme involves building six dams on the Mahadai river and its tributaries near Kanakumbi-Chorla.

The project is expected to produce a total of 300MW of power.