Tamil Nadu told the Supreme Court on Wednesday that it is its legitimate right to claim water from the Mullaperiyar dam.
A five-judge Constitution Bench asked senior counsel Vinod Bobde, appearing for Tamil Nadu, to convince the Bench that the State indeed is the lessee in the case.
The Bench had on Tuesday asked Bobde as to how Tamil Nadu stepped into the shoes of the lessee since the 1886 agreement was signed between Travancore State and the Government of India. In reply, Bobde cited Section 177 of the Government of India Act, 1935, after the enactment of which, he said, the federation came into existence and the agreements entered into by the Dominion of India devolved on the provinces, in this case, Tamil Nadu.
He also said that under the 1886 agreement, Madras province was to construct the dam. An agreement between the Dominion and part thereof meant the provinces, since ‘part’ refers to any unit or province, Bobde said.