K’taka ordered to release 9.2tmcft Cauvery water to TN for summer crop

EPS' promise to provide free three-phase electricity was meant to benefit scores of farmers in the dry belts with better irrigation facilities

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.

Later at a meeting with authority president Masood Hussain, Selvaraj discussed the problems regarding water sharing between the two states.

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He said although the MET department predicts a good monsoon this year, which will alleviate the water crisis of TN, another meeting of the committee will be called if the rains do not fulfil the water requirements of the state.

“I hope the Karnataka government will release adequate water on time,” Selvaraj said.

Earlier, Tamil Nadu had raised a complaint against Karnataka for failing to release the promised 2.5tmcft of water each between the months of February and May. The government also urged the authority to direct Karnataka government to provide the deficit of 2tmcft of water due for the month of May along with that for June.

The Cauvery Water Management Authority and Cauvery Water Regulation Committee were constituted in June 2018, as per the orders of the Supreme Court, to regulate the water sharing between the riparian states through which the river flows. Both the authority and committee were formed acting on a notification issued by the Centre on June 1. The Supreme Court in a February 16 order had asked the Centre to draft a scheme within six weeks and the Tamil Nadu government had moved court against the Centre when the six-week window ended. The Centre had issued the order after being rapped by the Supreme Court.

Karnataka was opposed to the formation of the committee as it would take away its control over three reservoirs on the Cauvery river basin.

The current storage of the reservoir at Mettur is 16 TMC feet as against its capacity of 93.4 TMCft.


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