India

Cauvery Water Dispute issue Karnataka unlikely to implement Supreme Court order

BENGALURU: Karnataka is not in the mood to implement the directive of Supreme Court to release 6,000 cusecs water of Cauvery river per day to Tamil Nadu from 21st September to 27th September. A final decision will be taken on Wednesday at a cabinet meeting headed by CM Siddaramaiah.

Briefing reporters after the order of the Supreme court, Siddaramaiah termed it as ‘difficult to enforce’. Siddaramaiah said that the meeting will discuss the situation and consider the possibility of not implementing the directive.

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As per the source that Siddaramaiah spoke to Congress president Sonia Gandhi on telephone and informed her of the situation in the state. He told Sonia that Karnataka cannot release any more water in view of the poor storage levels in the reservoirs and in the drought situation. It is indicating that the CM Sidaramaiah may take a tough decision on Wednesday.

Keeping aside the plea of Karnataka that releasing any more water of Cauvery river to Tamil Nadu would dip Bengaluru into a drinking water crisis, a bench comprising Justices UU Lalit and Dipak Misra directed the Congress government in the state to release 6,000 cusecs of water daily till 27th September.It had gone to the court to complain that the Cauvery Supervisory Committee had no authority to direct it to release 3,000 cusecs of water, but was ordered to release double that amount. Even Tamil Nadu opposed the order of the committee and saying it was too little and would spell doom for its samba crops. In 2002, then chief minister of Karnataka – SM Krishna was pulled by the court when he defied its order to release water to Tamil Nadu. He later apologized and released water.

In Karnataka, many leaders of Congress feel defying the order of Supreme Court will help the party in the Cauvery basin districts, where it is an emotive issue. The other option is to continue demanding the intervention of PM Narendra Modi and ask him to convene a meeting of the CM of the both state.
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Senior BJP leaders from Karnataka state have said that  it is wrong to ask Modi to intervene in the dispute since the Cauvery issue is before the Supreme court.

Indicating that Siddaramaiah might eventually fall in line and obey the order, a senior minister said that if CM of Karnataka – Siddaramaiah stands by his decision to not release water, he will be the first CM to do so in the state. S Bangarappa had refused to act on an order of the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal, but had to comply when the court intervened.

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