Mekedatu: Gadkari asks TN MPs to tone down protests

Mekedatu: Gadkari asks TN MPs to tone down protests

Union Minister for Water Resources Nitin Gadkari. (PTI File Pic)

Union Water Resources Minister Nitin Gadkari has requested senior AIADMK leader and Lok Sabha Deputy Speaker M Thambidurai to tone down his protest against the Mekedatu project so that the Centre could explore a solution acceptable to both Karnataka and Tamil Nadu.

Gadkari, in his letter to Thambidurai, requested him to help reduce the tempo of protests led by political parties in Tamil Nadu against the project and allow the Centre to find workout a solution.

Protests may lead to complications and may make things difficult, Gadkari stated in his letter, sources said.

The minister also said that the Centre would take Tamil Nadu into confidence before taking any decision on Mekedatu.

Tamil Nadu MPs from both the AIADMK and DMK have been protesting against the project both inside and outside Parliament.

Earlier, Gadkari had informed Karnataka Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy that he would soon convene a meeting of both Karnataka and Tamil Nadu Chief Ministers to arrive at a solution.

Karnataka is proposing to build a balancing reservoir on the Cauvery at Mekedatu to store excess water generated in the river basin.

From this water, the state proposes to generate electricity and use it for drinking purposes in the twin towns of Ramanagara and Channapatna.

The Central Water Commission had cleared the pre-feasibility report submitted by Karnataka and asked it to prepare a detailed project report.

However, Tamil Nadu has been opposing the project, saying that it would affect its share of water.

Dismissing Tamil Nadu's apprehension, Karnataka said the project will be more helpful to Tamil Nadu than Karnataka and the state will honour the Supreme Court and Cauvery Water Dispute Tribunal award.

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