NEW DELHI/MYSURU: The Cauvery Water Management Authority (CWMA) on Tuesday directed Karnataka to release 9.19 tmcft of water to Tamil Nadu in June. Angry farmers in Cauvery basin have urged the government not to release water, while the Karnataka government, treading cautiously, has decided to seek legal opinion. A senior officer from the Karnataka Water Resources Department said there is no cause for worry as the Authority has directed the state to release water depending on the inflow in the reservoirs.
However, for farmers in Mandya, who are waiting for pre-monsoon showers to save their standing crops, the Authority’s direction has come as a rude shock. The situation, they say, will turn grim if there is delay in the setting of monsoon both in Kerala and Kodagu district of Karnataka. As the news of the Authority’s direction spread, farmers in the Mandya-Mysuru region took to the streets.
Cauvery Hitharakshana Samithi chairman and former MP G Made Gowda said, “How can Karnataka release water? The delay in pre-monsoon showers has created panic among the farming community in the region.”The CWMA will review the situation in its next meeting. Water Resources Minister D K Shivakumar on Tuesday said the government will convene an all-party meeting, if required, to discuss the Cauvery issue.
Shivakumar said the government will protect state’s interest and at the same time respect the Authority’s direction to release water. “We will consult our legal experts before taking any decision,” he said.
No discussion on MekedatuThere was no discussion on Karnataka’s Detailed Project Report for building a dam across Cauvery at Mekedatu, according to CWMA officials.
In the second meeting of the CWMA held on December 2, 2018, the Tamil Nadu government put forth a strong case and charged that Karnataka’s move to construct a reservoir for storing water to meet the drinking water needs of Bengaluru city, was a ploy to increase the storage capacity and enhance its irrigation.
Let the new MPs solve crisis, says Tourism Minister
Commenting on the order by Cauvery Authority, Tourism Minister Sa Ra Mahesh said newly-elected MPs should solve the issue. He was speaking to media persons in the city on Tuesday after reviewing the development works at Mysuru City Railway Station.“25 representatives, including senior leaders, were elected to the Lok Sabha recently. Let them solve the issue,” said Mahesh. He said, personally, he was against the release of water since the state is reeling under a severe drought.
Krishnaraja Sagar, Kabini, Hemavathi and Harangi reservoirs in Cauvery basin have 14 tmc ft water Irrigation Department needs around 4.84 tmcft of water for next one month to meet drinking water needs of Bengaluru and standing crops Department needs another 2.08 tmcft of water to provide drinking water to Mysuru, Mandya, Chamarajnagar and other towns