Thu, Oct 27, 2016 | updated 08:17 PM IST

What will happen if Tamil Nadu passes a different resolution on Cauvery water, asks CPI

Updated: Sep 24, 2016 08:40 IST

New Delhi [India], Sept. 24 (ANI): With a special session of the Karnataka state assembly yesterday passing a resolution asking the government to use Cauvery water only to meet the state's drinking water needs, Communist Party of India (CPI) national secretary D. Raja on Saturday said if Karnataka passes such a resolution, then the Tamil Nadu assembly can pass a different resolution, then where will it lead to; it will lead to another situation of confrontation and conflict among states, and thus, both Karnataka and Tamil Nadu should honour the Supreme Court verdict.

Raja further said it should be a matter that should be considered by lawmakers and political parties, and as directed by the apex court, the Central Government should constitute a Cauvery Management Authority.

He urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to personally intervene in the matter to find an amicable solution to the long-standing problem.

"The Prime Minister personally should intervene and talk to the governments of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu and should try to find an amicable solution."

He, however, said the passing of the resolution was expected because the Karnataka Government and the political parties in Karnataka had been saying this, and now, the assembly has passed a resolution. "But this is not going to solve the problem," he added.

"The Cauvery water dispute is one of the oldest disputes in the country and several efforts were made to find solution to this dispute in the past. A tribunal was constituted, which gave an award, and the issue went to the apex court, and considering several factors, the apex court has given a verdict. Both the Karnataka and Tamil Nadu governments should honour the verdict. Instead of that, if the Karnataka assembly passes such a resolution, the Tamil Nadu assembly can pass a different resolution, then where will it lead to; it will lead to another situation of confrontation and conflict among the states."

Stating that the apex court has directed the Central Government to constitute a Cauvery Management Authority within four weeks, Raja added, "The Centre should do this without any delay and it should also see that both state governments do not go for confrontation and ensure that the issue is solved amicably, which is acceptable to both states."

"It is not that the Karnataka Government can claim a monopoly right over the Cauvery because it happens to be the upper riparian state, and it is also not that Tamil Nadu, which is the lower riparian state, should feel let down. Both states have an equal share and both states have equal rights on the Cauvery water. And, it should be understood, and should not be made an issue between Tamil Nadu and Karnataka; it should be not made an issue between the people of Tamil Nadu and the people of Karnataka," said the CPI leader.

Asking both governments to display political maturity to create a condition to understand the problem properly and act appropriately, Raja said, "It is not that the Supreme Court wants Karnataka people not to have drinking water and it is also not that Tamil Nadu people say no drinking water for the people of Karnataka. The Cauvery water does not belong to one state, it belongs to several states, particularly Karnataka and Tamil Nadu," he added.

Highlighting the "state of acute distress", the Karnataka resolution, endorsed by all parties, said it was "imperative" that the government ensures that no water from the present storages be drawn "save and except" for meeting drinking water needs of villages and towns in the Cauvery Basin and Bengaluru.

The resolution moved by BJP leader Jagadish Shettar and by Janata Dal (Secular) leader Y.S.V. Datta, however, did not refer to the apex court's direction to the state to release 6,000 cusecs of Cauvery water per day to Tamil Nadu.

The Cauvery Supervisory Committee had on September 19 asked Karnataka to release 3,000 cusecs per day from September 21 to 30, but the apex court had on September 20 doubled the quantum to 6,000 cusecs from September 21 to 27 after Tamil Nadu pressed for water to save its samba paddy crop.

It had also directed the Centre to constitute within four weeks the Cauvery Water Management Board as directed by Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal in its award.

Backed by an all party meeting mandate, the Karnataka cabinet had on Tuesday decided to defer the release of water to Tamil Nadu and convene a day's legislature session amid escalating row between the two neighbouring states.

The resolution noted that in the water year 2016-17, there has been an acute situation of distress but the shortfall in the basin will become known only at the end of the season on January 31, 2017.

It pointed out that the combined storage in four reservoirs in the Cauvery basin - Krishnaraja Sagar, Hemavathy, Harangi and Kabini - had reached "alarmingly low levels at 27 TMC ft". (ANI)