Karnataka has filed a review petition before the highest court against the order of the Cauvery River Water Authority headed by the prime minister, reports Vicky Nanjappa.
There seems to be no solution in sight for the states Karnataka and Tamil Nadu on the contentious issue of sharing water of the river Cauvery. While Tamil Nadu has decided to move the Supreme Court of India seeking more water, Karnataka has already filed a review petition before the highest court against the order of the Cauvery River Water Authority headed by the prime minister. The CRA had said that Karnataka should give 9,000 cusecs of water (0.8 thousand million cubic feet) per day till October 15.
An all party meeting in Karnataka will be held on Friday to discuss the issue. The legal team of the state has said that Karnataka is in no position to implement the order of the CRA or give in to the demands of Tamil Nadu, which has sought 2 TMC of water per day.
At the moment it appears that the Supreme Court will have the final say in the matter. A member of Karnataka's legal team from Karnataka told rediff.com that they will argue before the Supreme Court on the review petition filed by them and also counter the claims of Tamil Nadu as and when they decide to move the Supreme Court of India.
The Karnataka defence in the matter is clear and it says that it has only 80 TMC of water, and by the end of December 50 more TMC of water may flow in. Karnataka has said that its water requirement is not less than 160 TMC and at the moment the state is already falling short by 30 TMC. Releasing water to Tamil Nadu will only add to the burden, they say.
The question that Karnataka will pose in its arguments is whether Tamil Nadu requires, at the moment, the amount of water demanded. They have a summer rice crop and starting October and ending December it would need one TMC of water per day. The question of a bad year also must be taken into account and considering this is a bad year, in all Tamil Nadu will have to manage with 140 TMC per day, say members of the defence team.
Karnataka further argues that Tamil Nadu has at present 45 TMC stored in the Mettur reservoir. From October onwards they are likely to have 35 days of rainfall and by the end of it they will have 80 TMC of water.
Moreover, Tamil Nadu in the next three months would get 50 TMC of water from Karnataka by way of regeneration and also the North Eastern rainfall which would flow into Tamil Nadu. All this put together they would have roughly around 140 TMC.
Karnataka will also bring to the notice of the Supreme Court the 129 TMC of water that Tamil Nadu has in the underground delta reservoir. Karnataka says that they have documents to support this and this 129 TMC of water in the underground delta reservoir is known as a hidden treasure.
Karnataka is also expected to quote the order of the tribunal that had said that in the hidden treasure 30 TMC of water could be used during a bad year.
After Karnataka had given 20,000 cusecs of water to Tamil Nadu as a goodwill measure, a meeting of the Cauvery River Water Authority headed by the prime minister was held. The authority was constituted to implement the order of the tribunal and it was said that in case there is no consensus then the prime minister would have a final say in the matter.
The PM during this meeting had said that Karnataka would have to give 0.8 TMC or 9,000 cusecs of water per day until October 15 following which the matter would be examined.
Tamil Nadu, however, had demanded 2 TMC per day and Karnataka had not agreed to part with 0.8 TMC per day following which moving the Supreme Court was moved.
The question now is how much is Karnataka really ready to part with. Sources say that in all, till the end of December, they could part with 5 TMC and this is more of a goodwill gesture as this has been a bad year in terms of rainfall received.