Do not cut Cauvery water allocation citing recent surplus release: Karaikal ryots

According to sources, Tamil Nadu used to release around 1.3 TMC of water for July and August, and 5.7 TMC from September to January.

Published: 30th August 2022 05:39 AM  |   Last Updated: 30th August 2022 05:39 AM   |  A+A-

Cauvery in spate after water was discharged from the Mettur dam in Salem;

Express News Service

KARAIKAL: Farmers in Karaikal have expressed apprehension over authorities denying the enclave of its rightful share of Cauvery water in the coming months for samba cultivation, citing the recent excessive release which allegedly drained into the sea and did not help in kuruvai cultivation.

According to sources, Tamil Nadu used to release around 1.3 TMC of water for July and August, and 5.7 TMC from September to January. However, the State released over 5.4 TMC for June, July and August, which is a surplus of 4.14 TMC.

Farmers in Karaikal have expressed fear that Tamil Nadu might cite this excessive release, which only went to waste, and reduce it from the total annual allocation, which might affect farming in the coming months. "We need the allotted share of 5.7 TMC to cultivate samba in October or navarai in December.

The recent surplus release should not be taken as a reason to reduce the rightful allocation of 5.7 TMC from September to January," DN Suresh, a farmer-leader from Karaikal Mavatta Kadaimadai Vivasaayigal Sangam said. Years after the formation of the Cauvery Water Management Authority (CWMA) and Cauvery Water Regulation Committee (CWRC) in 2018, the States are still in conflict over sharing the Cauvery water.

According to the Supreme Court verdict on the interstate Cauvery river dispute in 2018, Karnataka should release a total of not less than 177.25 TMC to Tamil Nadu for an entire year. Tamil Nadu should release a total of not less than 7 TMC to Puducherry for an entire year. All the water is released from Tamil Nadu's delta districts to Puducherry's delta district of Karaikal.

Paddy coverage in Karaikal stretches to around 4,500 hectares. Farmers who complete harvest in September, start samba cultivation in October and harvest the paddy in January. Some farmers who are unable to start samba cultivation in October and might start navarai cultivation, which they harvest in April. P Pandiyan, a farmer from Thirunallar said,

"Most of us are dependent on Cauvery water alone as our groundwater is saline. So, we demand our rightful share from September to January, irrespective of the recent surplus release." An official from Puducherry's PWD said, "Receiving surplus water in June, July and August is less likely to affect the release from September to January. Water level at the Mettur dam still stands at around 120 feet and surplus water is still being released."


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