Kannada activist Vatal Nagaraj accuses CM Siddaramaiah of inaction on Cauvery issue

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BENGALURU: Former Chamarajnagar MLA and pro-Kannada activist Vatal Nagaraj on Thursday launched a scathing attack on both the Karnataka and Tamil Nadu governments over the Cauvery water issue.

Accusing Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah of inaction, Nagaraj said that in Wednesday’s meeting, no decision was taken and, if the Karnataka government fails to stand firm, he would call for a statewide protest.

“Karnataka government held an all-party meeting yesterday, and it is clear that during the meeting, the leaders decided to release the water. There is no water in our dams like KRS, Harangi, and others”, he said, adding, “There is not enough water in Bengaluru; we need more water for 1.5 crore people. That’s why we are protesting against the Tamil Nadu government, which is intentionally doing this by demanding water from Karnataka”.

This comes after the pro-Kannada activist and Chaluvali Vatal party leader Nagaraj held a protest on Wednesday amid the Tamil Nadu government’s demand for more share of Cauvery water when Karnataka is reeling under a severe water crisis.

Warning the Karnataka government of a statewide strike, Nagaraj said, “We need at least 110 thousand million cubic feet (tmcft) of water; what we have is just around 40 tmcft. The Karnataka government must stand firm, or else we’ll give a call for the Karnataka bandh. Some BJP and JDS leaders didn’t attend the all-party meeting, it shows their mindset about Cauvery”, he said.

On Wednesday, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah convened an all-party meeting to discuss the next course of action to be taken in the Cauvery water dispute. Earlier on Monday, the Karnataka government accused the Centre of unnecessarily delaying the Mekedatu project.

The Mekedatu project involves the construction of a balancing reservoir near Kanakapura in the Ramanagara district of Karnataka. The primary objective of the Mekedatu project is to provide drinking water to Bengaluru and neighbouring areas.

The governments of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu have been locked in a protracted tussle over the sharing of Cauvery waters. The river is seen as a major source of sustenance for the people in either state. The Centre formed the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal (CWDT) on June 2, 1990, to adjudicate disputes between Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka, and Puducherry with respect to their individual water-sharing capacities. (ANI)

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