The Supreme Court on Monday pulled up the Centre and asked it to notify the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal (CWDT) award by February 20.
A bench of justices R M Lodha, J Chelameswar and Madan B Lokur said the Centre had no discretion or choice but to do so
“Although no time frame is provided for publication of such a decision by the Tribunal, in the absence thereof, publication has to be done within a reasonable time,” Justice Lodha said.
“Since more than five years have already elapsed, we direct the Central Government to publish in the official gazette the final decision given by the CWDT dated February 5, 2007 as early as may be possible and not later than February 20, 2013.”
Justice Lodha further added, “Needless to say, the publication of the final decision of the CWDT in the official gazette shall be without prejudice to the pending proceedings.”
Justice Lodha pointed out that on January 4, 2013, the states concerned did not have any objection to the final decision of the CWDT being notified without prejudice to their rights and contentions raised in the pending appeals.
He also recalled that the court had noted the statement of Additional Solicitor General Harin Raval that the final decision by the Central Government for publication is expected by January 31, 2013.
The Bench posted the matter to February 7 for further hearing.