Meet on Cauvery row soon, says Centre

Karnataka to file reply to TN plea by September 3

The Central government on Thursday told the Supreme Court that it will convene a meeting of the Cauvery River Authority (CRA) headed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh soon to consider Tamil Nadu’s plea for release of 25.373 tmc ft of water to save the state’s standing crops.

In an affidavit filed through counsel Wasim Ahmed Quadri, the Centre said it had written to Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Kerala and Puducherry on the proposed meeting as the meeting was subject to quorum.

“Once the consent of the states is obtained, the date would be fixed for the same, the Centre,” the counsel said.

Besides the PM, Chief Ministers of the four states are members of the committee.

The Centre also told the court that as on August 22, Tamil Nadu has received only 5.81 TMC of water and there was a deficit of 85.95 TMC as the state fell short of 91.75 TMC water due to rain deficit.

On August 13, the apex court had sought the Centre’s response to Tamil Nadu government’s plea to convene a meeting of the CRA to discuss the distress situation in the state.

However, the apex court had declined to give any specific direction to the CRA as sought by Tami Nadu counsel C S Vaidyanathan pointing out that it can not direct a committe headed by prime minister to release water.

A bench of Justices D K Jain and Madan Lokur also directed Karnataka government to file its reply on Tamil Nadu’s application for evolving a distress water-sharing formula and posted the matter for September 3.

The bench had also told the Centre to respond to the application, particularly a personal request made by the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu to the Prime Minister, by separate letter which are on record.

On August 13, the apex court had sought the Centre's response to Tamil Nadu government's plea to convene a meeting of the CRA to discuss the distress situation in the state.

The bench also directed Karnataka government to file its reply on Tamil Nadu's application for evolving a distress water-sharing formula and posted the matter for September 3.

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