Karnataka CM Siddaramaiah says ‘no’ to Tamil Nadu CM Edappadi K Palaniswami request for releasing 15 tmcft water
Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami on Saturday requested his Karnataka counterpart Siddaramaiah to release at least 15 tmcft of water to save the standing crops in the Delta districts.
CHENNAI: Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami on Saturday requested his Karnataka counterpart Siddaramaiah to release at least 15 tmcft of water to save the standing crops in the Delta districts. Of this, seven tmcft could be released immediately and the balance within a fortnight. However, Siddaramaiah turned down the request saying it is not possible to do so as reservoirs in his state do not have sufficient water.
Explaining the plight of farmers in the Delta districts, which are badly in need of water to save the standing crops, Palaniswami had said the storage in Mettur dam as on January 12 stood at just 21.27 tmcft (utilisable storage 16.27 tmcft), which would be grossly inadequate to meet the irrigation needs of the standing crops and drinking water needs during summer.
On the other hand, Palaniswami said the crop season in Karnataka was already over and there was a gross storage of about 49.82 tmcft as on January 12 in the State’s four major reservoirs in the Cauvery basin.
“After reserving the minimum needs of drinking water supply and perennial crops, Karnataka can release at least 15 tmcft to Tamil Nadu to make up a part of the shortfall (68.224 tmcft), which is required to meet the crucial needs of the standing crops in Cauvery Delta,” the Chief Minister said.
Explaining the reason for the extended crop season in the Delta districts this year, the Chief Minister said, “Though Samba cultivation commenced soon and the rainfall due to the Northeast monsoon was helpful in the beginning, the intensity of rainfall became heavy and destructive by the end of October 2017.”
Due to this, the farmers of Cauvery Delta had to replant the crop, as a result of which the crop period got extended. These standing crops need irrigation in the critical stage of crop growth maturity beyond January 2018, he said.