Krishna river dispute: Supreme Court refuses to examine Centre's stand

State terms Telangana's application delaying tactics

Krishna river dispute: Supreme Court refuses to examine Centre's stand

 The Supreme Court on Thursday clarified that it would not call for records to examine the reasons for the Centre's stand in the Krishna water dispute between Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.

The Centre contends that the Krishna river water dispute could be referred to the tribunal for determining the share of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh without disturbing allocations for Karnataka and Maharashtra.

A bench of Justices Dipak Misra and Prafulla C Pant refused to entertain an application filed by Telangana, prompting its counsel to withdraw the plea.

“We will not call for records. It is a question of river dispute in the Andhra Pradesh Re-Organisation Act, 2014. Why should we probe into the Union of India’s decision making? Why should we say why they are not referring the (entire) dispute to the tribunal,” the bench  asked senior advocate C S Vaidyanathan, appearing for Telangana.

“The court does not have even jurisdiction to ask why and how Union of India is dealing with the (your) request,” the bench told him further.

The counsel submitted that the application was filed even prior to the Centre’s affidavit, in which it sought to clarify the Union’s decision.

In its affidavit, the Union government had stated “In view of the re-organisation of the state of AP, the Union of India vide letter Aug 25 has also clarified that it is the Krishna Water Dispute Tribunal II which would determine the respective shares of successor state of Telangana and the residual state of AP without disturbing the project wise allocation of other states of Karnataka and Maharashtra.”

As the court made its intention clear, Telangana's counsel agreed to withdraw his application, but urged the bench to keep its writ petition pending.

Appearing for Karnataka, senior advocate F S Nariman questioned the bona fide of interlocutory application, contending that it was delaying tactics, while another senior advocate T R Andhyarujina, representing Maharashtra, submitted that the river dispute already settled cannot be re-opened in this manner.

The court, however, posted the matter for further consideration on January 13 after Telangana’s counsel sought time to ask for instruction to respond to the stand taken by the Centre. In its petition, Telangana sought fresh determination of the Krishna river water formula, claiming that its fair share has so far not been adjudicated by the Krishna Water Dispute Tribunal, affecting the needs of the State and making its inhabitants suffer.

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