In a goodwill gesture, the Karnataka government agreed before the Apex Court on Monday to release 10,000 cusecs of water from the Cauvery river to Tamil Nadu till September 20.
In the wake of Karnataka’s gesture, a Bench of Justices D K Jain and Madan Lokur refused to pass any order on Tamil Nadu’s plea seeking a direction to its neighbour to release 2 TMC feet of water.
The Bench hoped the Cauvery River Authority (CRA) headed by the Prime Minister would be able to find an “amicable” solution to the river water dispute.
The court also disposed of Karnataka’s plea, saying if it is kept pending, the authority might not find a solution to the dispute and it would be left to the court to decide.
The Bench clarified that it is only an interim arrangement till September 20 and the state governments can take appropriate steps if no solution of the problem comes out of the CRA meeting.
“We, however, clarify that in case due to any reason the meeting of CRA does not take place or no decision is taken in the meeting, then it will be open to both the parties to take appropriate steps as may be advised,” the Bench said.
The CRA , which includes Chief Ministers of Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Puducherry and Kerala, is scheduled to take place on September 19.
The Bench, which had earlier pulled up PMO officials for not fixing a date for the CRA meeting, also took a dig at the Centre, whose lawyers were absent during the hearing.
“If we say something they (Centre) feel aggrieved but the Union of India is absent,” the Bench observed.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar has convened an emergency meeting of floor leaders of both Houses on Tuesday afternoon to apprise them about the decision to release Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu.
The meeting, to be held at Vidhana Soudha, is also likely to discuss the stand the state should take at the CRA talks, which is meeting after almost nine years.
Opposition leaders in the two Houses Siddaramaiah and S R Patil, floor leaders of JD(S) HD Revanna and MC Nanaiah, Water Resources Minister Basavaraj Bommai, chief secretary S V Ranganath and Water Resources Department officials will participate in the meeting