State, TN hold talks on Cauvery

Next meeting will be in Nov in Bangalore


The meeting held at the Secretariat here was to resolve differences over the implementation of the Cauvery Hydro Power Project meant to generate 1150 mw of power through four hydel schemes — two each in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. Union Power Secretary Hari Shankar Brahma presided over the meeting.

The four hydro-power schemes are Shivasamudram (270 mw), Mekedatu (360 mw) — both on the Karnataka side of the Cauvery river—and Rasimanal (360 mw) and Hogenakal (120 mw) in the lower riparian state of Tamil Nadu. Officials of the two other Cauvery basin states, Kerala and Puducherry, also participated in the meeting.

While the Karnataka officials, led by its Energy Department Principal Secretary K Jayaraj, sought to impress upon Tamil Nadu to delink the Shivasamudram hydel scheme from the rest as it was a “run of the river project” without involving any submergence of lands, sources said Tamil Nadu stuck to its stand, not favouring the delinking of the scheme.
However, the meeting which came in the wake of the recent statue diplomacy between the two states was marked by cordiality, sources said. Brahma suggested that the Centre would do everything it can to help Tamil Nadu and Karnataka sort out the differences through negotiations. The next meeting of the basin states has been scheduled for November in Bangalore.

Tamil Nadu PWD Secretary Ramasubramaniam said the state was not averse to the National Hydro Power Corporation (NHPC) implementing all the four schemes.
Karnataka going ahead with the Shivasamudram project on its own could create problems in the backdrop of the pending Cauvery water dispute, he noted.

Even as the Cauvery Tribunal’s Interim Award, which is in force as the final award, has been challenged before the apex court by both states, Karnataka had to make good a shortfall of 20 tmcft of Cauvery waters this year, Ramasubramaniam pointed out, adding, its release would help for greater cordiality among both  states on this issue.

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