DK Shivakumar's Mekedatu comment riles Tamil Nadu

Former CM O Panneerselvam said that without TN’s permission, Mekedatu dam construction cannot take place.
Karnataka Deputy Chief Minister DK Shivakumar. (File Photo | PTI)
Karnataka Deputy Chief Minister DK Shivakumar. (File Photo | PTI)

CHENNAI:  The statement of Karnataka Congress government’s deputy chief minister DK Shivakumar, who holds the irrigation portfolio, that his government would build a dam across the Cauvery at Mekedatu has riled political parties in Tamil Nadu. While water resources minister Duraimurugan said the state government would oppose the proposal at all levels, all political parties, including the state unit of the Congress, condemned it. 

Duraimurugan also recalled that the verdicts given by the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal and the Supreme Court have no reference to the dam. “Hence, building a dam at Mekedatu or building any other structure is not permitted in the uncontrolled intermediate catchment areas where Tamil Nadu has rights as it will affect TN’s interests. It is therefore inappropriate to say Karnataka will construct a dam at Mekedatu,” Duraimurugan said. 

Greeting Shivakumar on the poll victory, Duraimurugan said, “I think I will have a chance to meet him in person soon. Let us discuss the issue in detail.  Till then, I hope Mr Shivakumar will keep his patience.” PMK founder S Ramadoss condemned the Karnataka minister’s remarks that no progress has been made on the dam since 2018, and though Rs 1,000 crore was allocated, land acquisition for building the dam has not taken place.   

‘Construction can’t take place without TN’s nod’

“Shivakumar discussing the Mekedatu dam issue in his first meeting with officials of the irrigation department shows how serious the state is about building the dam. If Karnataka builds a dam at Mekedatu, it would turn the Cauvery Delta into a desert. To discuss the legal and political actions that need to be taken in this regard, TN government should convene an all-party meeting.”

Former CM O Panneerselvam said that without TN’s permission, Mekedatu dam construction cannot take place. “Why has CM Stalin not opposed the statement? If the CM does not do it, BJP will take steps to stop Karnataka’s move,” BJP chief Annamalai said. TNCC president KS Alagiri said TN Congress Committee would oppose the dam plan at all levels since it would not augur well for the state.

“Minister Duraimurugan has condemned Shivakumar’s statement. It is not enough. TN government should also take steps to prevent the Karnataka government from making such statements in the future. Stalin should convey his opposition to Karnataka and should try to resolve the issue,” said AMMK general secretary TTV Dhinakaran said.

‘D K Shivakumar rubbing TN on the wrong side’
“It is surprising to see that Mr Shivakumar chose to rub the neighbouring state on the wrong side within a few days of assuming office. I think officials may not have given him the full details,” says Duraimurugan 

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