Mahadayi: Interim plea before tribunal

State seeks 7tmcft water annually

The Karnataka government on Tuesday filed an interim application before the Mahadayi Water Dispute Tribunal seeking permission to utilise 7 tmc feet of water for irrigation and drinking water purposes in Malaprabha basin area, mainly Hubballi-Dharwad cities and nearby towns.

In its application, Karnataka said that State should be permitted to lift or pump 7 tmc feet of water annually from Mahadayi basin during the months of monsoon for meeting irrigation and drinking water needs in the drought-hit areas of the Malaprabha basin.

“If the Tribunal permits to draw 7 tmc feet of water it will be lifted after obtaining clearances from the Union Ministry of Environment and Forest and other agencies as required by the law”said the petition.

The Karnataka said water proposed to be lifted from Mahadayi basin was flowing down unutilised to Arabian sea at present.

Karnataka has taken up the Kalasa-Banduri Nala to improve drinking water supply to the twin cities of Hubballi-Dharwad and Belagavi, Gadag districts. The project involves building barrages across Kalasa and Banduri, two tributaries of the Mahadayi river for diverting 7.56 tmc of water to the Malaprabha river which supplies the drinking water to the twin cities.

In 2002, the Centre gave clearances to Karnataka to divert water from Mahadayi water. However, the project was stalled after Goa raised objections saying the proposed project would lead to drying up its life line - Mandovi River which is called Mahadayi in Karnataka. The Ministry of Water Resources constituted the Tribunal to resolve the issue.

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