TIRUCHY: It was only a day ago that a few among them burned an effigy of Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, frustrated over the neighbouring State’s refusal to release Cauvery waters ahead of the long-term Samba season. However, staring at a bleak season, 20 delegates from various farmers’ associations called on Siddaramaiah at Bengaluru on Thursday to request the immediate release of 20 tmcft water to irrigate the parched fields of Cauvery delta.
Lakhs of farmers in the delta are anxiously looking forward to the all-party meeting that the Karnataka chief minister has convened, where their plea for water will be one of the main points of discussion. The farmers here is likely to meet on the same day to discuss the outcome of Karnataka’s meeting.
For now, all their hopes are pinned on the upper riparian State receiving bountiful rains so that their reservoirs would have enough water to release. Their appeal to the neighbour was not political or between governments; they sought water on humanitarian grounds, said members of the delegation.
“We want our neighbours to share the available quantum of water with us to protect our livelihood. The chief minister told us that our demands will be considered, we are banking on that assurance,” one of the delegation member, P Viswanathan from Tiruchy, told Express.
Though he heard the farmers from more than six districts of Tamil Nadu for about 45 minutes, Siddaramaiah did not agree to their demands nor denied it outright. Instead, he said there was deficient rainfall there in the recent past that has brought down the storage level. This is the reason why Karnataka was unable to release any water, he told the team from here.
Most farmers of Cauvery delta were unable to take up cultivation during the short-term, Kuruvai, and Thalady that comes between Kurvai and Samba to the full potential in the recent years, said Tamil Nadu Natural Waterways Production Movement president and DMK leader, K P Ramalingam.
It is important both for the farmers and thus, imminently, food production that the Samba cultivation is taken up widely, for which a minimum of 20 tmcft water should be discharged immediately, he added