Shettar to lead Cauvery Basin MP's to meet PM tomorrow

Belgaum, Dec 6 : Faced with a crunch situation following the Supreme Court order that Karnataka should release 10,000 cusecs of water from Cauvery to Tamil Nadu for five days till December 9, Chief Minsiter Jagdish Shettar today said that he would lead a delegation of Lok Sabha members from the Cauvery basin districts in the state and meet Prime Minister and Union Water Resources minister in Delhi tomorrow to explain the ground situation.

Making a statement in the Assembly Mr Shettar said the state would appraise to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who is also the president of the Cauvery River Authority, the current situation and water availability in the Cauvery reservoirs in the state. However, Mr Shettar did not make it clear whether the state would release water as per the apex court order or not. The Chief Minister said, 'The Supreme Court has ordered us to release 10,000 cusecs of Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu for five days.

We are already facing a critical situation. So we have decided to go in a delegation which will include MPs from the Cauvery basin districts in Karnataka to meet Prime Minister and Water Resourcesminister to apprise them of the ground situation. After meeting them, my government will take the next course of action.' The chief minister said the delegation would also seek opinion of legal experts in Delhi including former judges and experts and then the government would decide on the next course of action.

He stressed that on earlier occasions, whenever Karnataka did not follow the directions of CRA or the Cauvery Monitoring Committee, it had adversely affected the farmers of the State. 'In 1991 the then Karnataka government decided to pass an ordinance over release of water and this led to the CRA passing an interim order directing Karnataka to release 205 tmcft of Cauvery water per annum and specified the quantum of monthly release.

This order hit us as hard as the 1924 pact between the Madras Presidency nd the erstwhile princely State of Mysore,' Mr Shettar added. Meanwhile, some opposition members had earlier alleged that the government had already issued orders to let out more water to Tamil Nadu, which was however denied by irrigation minister Basavaraj Bommai. Replying to Chief Minister's statement, Opposition leader Siddaramaiah said the state faced a critical situation as the water levels are low in Cauvery reservoirs.

'It is a critical period for agriculture in the basin that standing crops in lakhs of acres need water supply for the next one month. 'We are not satisfied by chief minister's statement which is ambiguous and does not make it clear whether the state will release water, already release it or will not release any water. So the Chief Minsiter should clarify it,' the Congress leader demanded.

- Agencies

Published On : Dec 06, 2012