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We have no water to give and we are going to challenge the order to release water to TN before the SC, Siddaramaiah told reporters today. File photo

Karnataka to challenge order to release Cauvery water to TN before SC: Siddaramaiah

The Cauvery Water Regulation Committee has directed Karnataka to release water at the rate of 3,000 cusecs to TN from September 28 to October 15

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Karnataka will challenge the order of the Cauvery Water Regulation Committee to release Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu before the Supreme Court, said Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, adding that the state has no water to give.

The Cauvery Water Regulation Committee has directed Karnataka to release water at the rate of 3,000 cubic feet per second (cusecs) to Tamil Nadu (TN) from Thursday (September 28) to October 15.

Siddaramaiah told reporters at Male Mahadeshwara Hills in Chamarajanagar district on Wednesday that he has spoken to the state's legal team that it should be challenged in the apex court.

No water to give

"We are challenging the order of the Regulation Committee before the Supreme Court. We don't have water to give," said the CM.

Deputy CM D K Shivakumar had on Tuesday expressed satisfaction over the CWRC rejecting TN Nadu's request to get Karnataka to release 12,000 cusecs.

Karnataka submitted before CWRC at its meeting in New Delhi on Tuesday that the shortfall in cumulative inflows to its four reservoirs in the Cauvery basin up to September 25 is 53.04 per cent.

Failure of south-west monsoon

According to Karnataka officials, due to the failure of the south-west monsoon (from June to September) this year, there is no sufficient storage in the four reservoirs and the State is facing such a grave situation that it is finding it extremely difficult even to cater to the drinking water requirements let alone supplying for irrigation.

The rainfall received in Karnataka this year in the months of August and September is the lowest in the last 123 years, they said.

Drop call for bandh

Later, speaking to reporters in Bengaluru, Shivakumar, the water resources minister, appealed to Kannada organisations to drop the call for bandh on Friday, and said the government is committed to protect the interest of the farmers and drinking water requirements of the state.

"Yesterday's (Bengaluru) bandh has been by and large successful, people have cooperated...we too are with protesters, as we are in the government, we have to abide by law and rules. Some organisations have called for bandh on September 29, I appeal to them, as people have cooperated with yesterday's bandh; once again calling a bandh will cause losses and inconvenience to them, let that not happen," he said.

Not to release water

Following the agitations and after hearing the arguments made by the government, the quantum of water to be released to TN has been reduced from 5,000 cusecs to 3,000 cusecs, the Congress leader pointed out.

"Rejecting Tamil Nadu's request for releasing 12,000 cusecs is a big (thing) for Karnataka. Earlier, we had committed 3,000 cusecs, but in the recent hearing we said we will not release water. Even now, it is the opinion of the Chief Minister and mine is not to release water from KRS dam," said Shivakumar.

Further, he added, "In other places there is inflow and any ways the water including the seepage water will go (to TN), and there will be evaporation as well."

Karnataka bandh has been called on September 29 by 'Kannada Okkuta', an umbrella outfit for Kannada organisations, led by activist Vatal Nagaraj.

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