BENGALURU: The Deputy Chief Minister DK Shivakumar on Thursday said it will request the Cauvery Water Management Authority (CWMA) to reconsider its decision on sharing water with Tamil Nadu.
Shivakumar said the CWMA has instructed the Karnataka government to release 10,000 cusecs of water to Tamil Nadu over the next 15 days at a time when the state was grappling with water shortage.
Speaking to ANI, Deputy CM Shivakumar said, “We received an instruction that we have to release 10,000 cusecs of water (from Cauvery) for 15 days. We are aware that the state is currently grappling with a water crisis. We are facing severe drought in some areas.”
“Still, in compliance with the Supreme Court directive, we have released the water (from the Cauvery) over the last four to five days. However, we urge the authority to reconsider the decision (to release water to Tamil Nadu) as it might have a direct impact on the availability of potable water here in Karnataka,” the Deputy CM added.
Meanwhile, weighing in on the issue, former chief minister Basavaraj Bommai on Thursday said the Congress government has betrayed farmers in the state as it did not put forward their plight before the Cauvery Water Management Authority.
“Congress govt has betrayed the farmers, especially those inhabiting the Cauvery river basin. They did not fight their case before the CWMA. Now, they should stand up for our farmers before the Supreme Court and argue our case on merit rather than meekly surrendering to the authority and giving away water (to Tamil Nadu). This is dhokha (betrayal) with our farmers,” former CM Bommai said.
Earlier, on Monday, deputy chief minister Shivakumar said Tamil Nadu need not worry about the release of Cauvery water.
“We respect the court’s Distressed Water Sharing Formula with regard to the Cauvery. There is no need for the people of Tamil Nadu to approach the Supreme Court in such a hurry. We have to work together to cater to the interests of both the states,” he said.
The Kaveri is an interstate basin that originates in Karnataka and passes through Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry before draining into the Bay of Bengal.
The total watershed of the Cauveri basin is 81,155 sq km, of which the river’s catchment area is about 34,273 sq km in Karnataka, 2,866 sq km in Kerala and the remaining 44,016 sq km in Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry. (ANI)