Bengaluru (Karnataka) [India], September 4 (ANI): Speaking on the continuing row over Cauver Water sharing, Karnataka Deputy Chief Minister DK Shivakumar on Monday said, “We are protecting the interest of Karnataka’s farmers”.
Speaking to reporters, Shivakumar said, “We are protecting the interest of Karnataka’s farmers. We know how to protect Karnataka farmers. BJP and JDS are doing politics. They demanded 25,000 cusecs of water. We agreed on 3,000 cusecs and now the court has given direction on 5,000 cusecs. The matter is in court again, we are appealing before the authorities for it to be reduced because there is no rain”.
The Karnataka Deputy CM had earlier suggested that the only solution to the long-running dispute was the Mekedatu project.
The Mekedatu project aims to create a balancing reservoir on the Cauvery River in Karnataka. It involves the construction of a reservoir near Kanakapura, which would help provide drinking water to Bengaluru and support agricultural activities in the Cauvery basin.
The Deputy CM’s comments were met with criticism from former Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai who said that state government had failed its people.
“The Karnataka govt has totally failed the farmers of Karnataka…It is a directionless government which is not able to protect the interests of the state in inter-state water disputes, farmers are in despair” said Basavaraj Bommai.
Tamil Nadu government approached the top court seeking direction to Karnataka to release 24,000 cusecs of water daily per day from the reservoirs in Karnataka. Karnataka government also filed an affidavit last week opposing Tamil Nadu’s application saying that the application is based on an assumption that this year is the normal rainwater year.
Earlier, the Supreme Court had said that it doesn’t possess any expertise on this issue and sought a report from the Cauvery Water Management Authority (CWMA) on the quantum of release made by Karnataka. Posting the Cauvery River water-sharing issue for hearing on Monday, a bench of Justices BR Gavai, PS Narasimha and Prashant Kumar Mishra asked CWMA, which met on August 28, to decide release of water for next fortnight in the Cauvery water-sharing dispute between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu.
The matter has been a controversial issue between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu for decades and they have been locked in battle over the sharing of water from the Cauvery river, which is a major source of irrigation and drinking water for millions of people in the region.
The Centre formed the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal (CWDT) on June 2, 1990, to adjudicate disputes between Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka and Puducherry with respect to the water-sharing capacities. (ANI)