Union government can’t solve Mekedatu row: Union Jal Shakti Minister

“We can only facilitate and we are ready to do that,” said Shekhawat, who was in Bengaluru to review Jal Jeevan scheme implementation. 

Published: 06th March 2022 05:47 AM  |   Last Updated: 06th March 2022 05:47 AM   |  A+A-

Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai in conversation with Union Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, in Bengaluru on Saturday, March 5, 2022. (Photo | Express)

By Express News Service

BENGALURU: A day after Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai announced Rs 1,000 crore for the Mekedatu reservoir project, Union Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat on Saturday said the Union government cannot resolve the contentious issue as water is a state subject. A solution can be found only when parties involved sit across the table and hammer out a solution. “We can only facilitate and we are ready to do that,” said Shekhawat, who was in Bengaluru to review Jal Jeevan scheme implementation. 

“Though it is a subject of concern, I cannot talk much as the issue is before the court. I hope and wish that both Karnataka and Tamil Nadu will resolve it, like how Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh did it. The two states have now agreed to connect Ken and Betwa rivers in Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh. Any issue can be resolved if talks are held,” he said.

Asked further, the minister said he too wished that the Mekedatu project sees the light of day.  “The Centre can only facilitate and help technically, and for that, both states have to come forward,” he said. Asked whether the Union government is going to facilitate such a meeting, he said it depends on both states. “We are ready to help them in all possible manner.” 

On the recent Padayatra taken out by the opposition Congress demanding the implementation of the project, Shekawat said Congress was in power for over 55 years. “They did not do their job properly and that is why such problems exist in the country.

Congress was in power when the Constitution came into force, but no provision was made for interstate water disputes. They did not have the vision and that is why all the states are involved in water disputes. They have no moral right to question BJP. The BJP government has resolved many issues and will resolve many more. Only a BJP government can resolve the Mekedatu issue too,” he said.

Bommai for amendment to Inter-State Water Disputes Act

Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai on Saturday said the Inter-State Water Disputes Act needs to be amended to overcome the narrow political considerations over water disputes and make more water available for people.



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