CHENNAI: The Karnataka government has submitted the Detailed Project Report (DPR) for the proposed Mekedatu Balancing Reservoir cum Drinking Water Project to the Central Water Commission (CWC).
A formal communication in this regard was sent by the Principal Secretary to the Water Resources Department, Karnataka, in a letter written to Chief Engineer, Project Appraisal Organisation of CWC, on January 18, and CWC has acknowledged the same.
In the letter, Karnataka claimed that a pre-feasibility report was already forwarded to Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Puducherry, but no comments were received from the co-basin States.
Now, the DPR will be placed before the Cauvery Water Management Authority (CWMA) and after its approval, will be brought before the Advisory Committee of the Union Ministry of Water Resources.
The DPR will be examined in specialised directorates of CWC including the Inter-State Matters Directorate, and if found acceptable, will be submitted to the Advisory Committee of Irrigation and Multipurpose Projects of the Ministry of Water Resources, for acceptance. On the basis of the note prepared by CWC and deliberations during the meeting of the Advisory Committee, a decision on acceptance of the project will be taken.
Recently, an affidavit filed before the Supreme Court by the Under Secretary to the Ministry of Water Resources, Ananda Chandra, had said: “The conditional clearance granted for preparation of the DPR was subject to the project authority (Karnataka) resolving inter-state matters amicably by due consultation with co-basin States of Cauvery basin. Also, acceptance of CWMA would be a prerequisite for consideration of the DPR for techno-economic approval by the Advisory Committee of the ministry.”
Tamil Nadu has been vehemently opposing the project and the CWC’s decision to grant permission for Karnataka to prepare the DPR. The State government said the project was in utter disregard to the adjudication rendered by the Supreme Court. “The attempt of Karnataka is to increase its storage capacity and enhance its irrigation, which would be in gross violation of the decision of the tribunal as modified by the court, besides seriously jeopardising the rights of the inhabitants of Tamil Nadu,” the government said in its petition before the apex court.