Cauvery dispute: Row deepens as Karnataka asked to release 3000 cu water to TN | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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Cauvery dispute: Row deepens as Karnataka asked to release 3000 cu water to TN

Sep 29, 2023 05:21 PM IST

On September 26, the Cauvery Water Regulatory Committee (CWRC) had asked the Karnataka government to release 3000 cusecs water per second to its neighbour from September 26

The Cauvery Water Management Authority (CWMA) on Friday upheld a regulatory panel’s directions to Karnataka to release 3000 cusecs water per second to Tamil Nadu between September 28 and October 15 at a key meeting in the national capital, deepening a major discord between the two southern states, a person familiar with the matter said.

The Cauvery interstate basin originates in Karnataka and threads its way through Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry (File Photo)
The Cauvery interstate basin originates in Karnataka and threads its way through Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry (File Photo)

The Cauvery interstate basin originates in Karnataka and threads its way through Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry before flowing into the Bay of Bengal.

Also Read: Karnataka will move SC against Cauvery panel order to release water to Tamil Nadu: Siddaramaiah

Being a lower-riparian state in the basin, Tamil Nadu depends on releases by Karnataka, particularly during the monsoon, to meet its water needs. During summers, Tamil Nadu comes under a rain-shadow region.

On September 26, the Cauvery Water Regulatory Committee (CWRC) had asked the Karnataka government to release 3000 cusecs water per second to its neighbour from September 26, the day on which its earlier mandate to Karnataka to release 5,000 cusecs per second for 15 days was to an end.

Farmers organisations and various groups called a major strike in Karnataka, leading to arrests, which paralysed life in Bengaluru on Friday, to protest the directions to release of water to Tamil Nadu.

At the meeting, representatives of the Karnataka government argued that the state was battling a water crisis due to drought following a deficient monsoon. “Karnataka said it was not in any position to comply with the directions because of water scarcity,” the person cited above said.

On September 14, after a Cabinet meeting, the Karnataka government had declared a major drought in 195 taluks in the state, including nine taluks around Bangalore, Karnataka’s representatives argued. A taluk is a unit of revenue administration.

In Friday’s meeting, the regulatory committee said that Karnataka must follow the directions to release the amount it owed to Tamil Nadu as determined in a previous meeting. The panel however rejected Tamil Nadu’s immediate demand that Karnataka should also simultaneously release a backlog of 12000 cusecs water.

The chairman of the CWMA, Saumitra Haldar, told Karnataka that it needed to provide, as in previous years, water till October 15 only because both the states would then start receiving rains from the winter monsoon, the person quoted above said.

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