Tamil Nadu moves SC against Mekedatu project

Last Updated 30 November 2018, 16:57 IST

The Tamil Nadu government on Friday moved the Supreme Court seeking a direction to restrain Karnataka from going ahead with "unauthorised" Mekedatu project across inter-state Cauvery river.

In an application, Tamil Nadu urged the court to restrain Karnataka government and Cauvery Neervari Nigam from proceeding with the preparation of detailed project report (DPR) pertaining to the construction of a reservoir at Mekedatu. It contended that the status quo has to be maintained till its genuine and justifiable objections were not decided.

The drinking water project-cum-reservoir that got a green signal from the Central Water Commission on November 22, has a capacity of 67.16 tmcft and can generate 400 MW power at a cost of Rs 5,912 crore.

The Tamil Nadu government maintained that the "unilateral action of Karnataka" has caused "serious apprehension amongst the people of the state as it would affect the livelihood of lakhs of farmers, who depend on the Cauvery waters."

The project is contrary to the final decision of the Cauvery Water Dispute Tribunal and the judgement of the apex court on the issue, it claimed.

"The proposed reservoir would result in impounding the flows in the intermediate catchment below KRS and Kabini reservoirs and Biligundlu in the common border of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. It would have a cascading effect on the 10 daily and monthly inflows during the crucial months of June to September," the application stated.

The Tamil Nadu also claimed that in 2017-2018, Karnataka did not even release 3 TMC ft of water to meet in-basin drinking water requirements during summer months.

"The attempt of state of Karnataka is to increase its storage capacity and enhance its irrigation which would be in gross violation of the decision of the Tribunal as modified by this court besides seriously jeopardising the rights of the inhabitants of the applicant state to the flows of the inter-state river Cauvery," it said.

The state further contended the project would amount to reopening the adjudication which commenced in 1990 and decided by the tribunal in 2007 and the apex court on February 16, this year.

(Published 30 November 2018, 08:15 IST)

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