Daily wrap: Cauvery water for Tamil Nadu; 3 Bengal MLAs join BJP

Gehlot, Gandhi and Pilot
Congress President Rahul Gandhi with Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and Deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot, addresses the media. (Photo: PTI)

K’taka ordered to release 9.2tmcft Cauvery water to TN for summer crop
The Cauvery Water Management Authority on Tuesday (May 28) ordered the Karnataka government to release 9.19 tmcft of Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu due for the month of June. The water will help farmers to initiate the summer crop of Kuruvai in the state. M Selvaraj, the newly-elected MP from Nagapattinam represented the Tamil Nadu government at the meeting of the board. Although speculations were high that Tamil Nadu will put forth its objections to the construction of Mekedatu dam across the Cauvery by Karnataka, Selvaraj said the issue should not be debated as the matter is pending for hearing in the Supreme Court.

Ministerial berths likely for rebel MLAs in Karnataka
While post-poll chaos has grappled the Congress-JD(S) coalition in Karnataka, the government is likely to give ministerial berths to its dissenting MLAs in order to stop them from jumping the ship. Speculations were rife that some of the existing ministers will be asked to quit the state cabinet to accommodate the rebel MLAs. However, the Congress Coordination Committee chief Siddaramaiah on May 28 (Tuesday) reiterated that the government will not reshuffle but only expand the cabinet to fill three vacant posts.

Three West Bengal MLAs, several councillors join BJP in Delhi
Three West Bengal MLAs, including BJP leader Mukul Roy’s son Subhrangshu Roy, joined the saffron party on Tuesday as it works to consolidate its position in the state following its impressive show there in the Lok Sabha polls. Besids Subhrangshu, TMC’s Tusharkanti Bhattacharya and CPI(M)’s Debendra Nath Roy were the other MLAs from the state who joined the saffron party along with several councillors, BJP leader Anil Baluni said. They joined the BJP at the party’s headquarters here in the presence of BJP general secretary Kailash Vijaywargiya and Mukul Roy.

Congress crisis: Leaders make beeline to Rahul Gandhi’s house
An end to the crisis that has engulfed the Congress, in the aftermath of party president Rahul Gandhi’s resignation, following the outfit’s humiliating defeat at the hustings, doesn’t seem to be in sight. Reports suggest that the party is in no hurry to take a decision on accepting Rahul’s decision. With the party all set to zero-in on the Congress parliamentary party leader within a week’s time, perhaps the issue of leadership change would be taken up later. Buzz in political circles is that Rahul may be made the leader of the Congress’ parliamentary party. Meanwhile, efforts are on to convince Rahul to re-consider his decision while he remains adamant on his decision to quit. On Tuesday, Rahul Gandhi had a series of visitors with his sister Priyanka Gandhi Vadra as well as Rajasthan’s ruling duo Ashok Gehlot and Sachin Pilot calling on him amid rumblings of discontent in the state and his insistence on quitting.

Why both Chelsea and Arsenal desperately need to win Europa League
It should be a match to look forward to. Arsenal and Chelsea, two London giants who have had a mixed season — hopes dashed, rekindled, and dashed again before reaching the Europa League final in Baku, only to see injuries, fan travel issues, and Armenian player Henrikh Mkhitaryan (who plays for Arsenal) pull out of the game due to security fears in Azerbaijan. While Chelsea haven’t made an official announcement, there’s a chance their defensive midfielder N’Golo Kanté may miss the match because of a knee injury.

Rumblings within Rajasthan Cong akin to Hollywood blockbuster ‘Reservoir Dogs’
The action within the Rajasthan Congress has started resembling Quentin Tarrantino’s cult classic Reservoir Dogs. In that film, members of a gang turn against each other after a failed heist. All of them suspect one of them is a snitch and blame the failure on his betrayal. Within a few hours, after heated arguments that turn violent, they kill each other one by one. In Rajasthan, members of the Congress have turned against each other after the party’s 0-25 loss in the recent elections. Blaming each other for the failure, they have started an ugly war within the party.

Jagan Mohan Reddy on a high, but will Andhra Pradesh go dry?
When the matinee idol of Telugu cinema NT Rama Rao stormed to power with a landslide mandate in the 1994 Assembly elections, the first file he signed after taking oath as Chief Minister was to impose total prohibition in the state. The “revolutionary move”, he had said, was to honour the Telugu women who led an anti-liquor agitation in Andhra Pradesh. The state-wide stir had prompted his Telugu Desam Party to make the introduction of dry law one its key poll promises. However, around two years later, his successor and son-in-law N Chandrababu Naidu lifted the prohibition with a “heavy heart”, saying it was “neither successful nor feasible because of smuggling from bordering states.”