Hailing the notification of the final award of the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa today said the state has got justice after 22 long years of struggle as Karnataka is now bound to release water from the river.
"It is a great victory for me and my government... after 22 long years we have got justice," she told reporters at the Secretariat here responding to the development.
Noting it was also a victory of Cauvery Delta farmers, she said since the award has been notified it becomes binding on the neighbouring state, which she said, cannot deny water in the future to Tamil Nadu which was "literally at the mercy of Karnataka."
She said at times of distress, the state would also abide by the tribunal's directions in sharing Cauvery water.
Terming as a "tremendous victory," the notification of the final award, she said after spending 30 years in politics "first time in these years, I have a sense of fulfilment and achievement today."
Flaying the Centre, she said it was "reluctant" even to notify the interim award even as there was a delay in notifying the final award too.
The Chief Minister noted that while the monsoon sometimes came in bounty to her state, only the overflow from reservoirs in Karnataka during good monsoon there were made available to Tamil Nadu. "We are grateful to the Supreme Court for giving us justice," she said.
"It is a red-letter day for me personally," she said even as her government won its case at the National Green Tribunal over converting the New Assembly-Secretariat complex into a multi-speciality hospital.
Meanwhile, DMK President M Karunanidhi, whose party is an ally of the ruling UPA at the Centre, thanked the Central government and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for notifying the Cauvery Final Award.
Recalling the initiatives taken by his party during DMK rule such as asking the Centre in 1970 to constitute a Tribunal, Karunanidhi said, "On behalf of Tamil people and DMK, I thank the Central government, Prime Minister (Manmohan Singh) and the Supreme Court".
"By notifying the gazette, the accusations made by Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa that my party and its MPs are not urging the Centre for notifying the gazette, has been proved wrong", he said.
Minister of State in PMO V.Narayanasamy also welcomed the gazette notification of the final award of the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal.
He told PTI that the award has now got to be implemented `in letter and spirit` by the riparian States concerned.
Narayanasamy, elected to Lok Sabha from Puducherry, said the Supreme Court's directive for notification of the final award had been implicitly adhered to by the Union government and this would be a relief for water starved delta districts including Karaikal.