Live and let live, release water to TN: SC to Karnataka

NEW DELHI/BENGALURU: The Supreme Court came down heavily on Karnataka on its stand of not releasing Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu.

In its hearing on TN petition asking the SC to direct Karnataka to release Cauvery water to the state as per the Cauvery river tribunal verdict, the apex court observed that the state must adhere by the tribunal verdict and release water as per its orders.
It told Karnataka, in no uncertain terms, that TN must get water from Cauvery on a regular basis. It asked the state to "live and let live" by releasing portion of the Cauvery water to TN.

Agency reports cite that Justice Dipak Misra, while hearing the case on Friday afternoon said: "Live and let live principle should be kept in mind. Both states should live in harmony".

However, countering the SC take, water resources department minister M B Patil told TOI that Karnataka still has not presented its case with ground realities on the water sharing dispute.

"What the SC has said is just an observation and we will present the ground realities to the apex court on Monday. We barely have water to suffice our drinking water needs," he said. Patil said at present the state has only 51 TMC of water in all its four reservoirs, of which 40 to 42 TMC of water is required solely for the drinking water purpose of Karnataka.

"How much can we share from the balance 10 TMC of water?" he questioned.

According to sources in the water resources department, the state has been forced to stop the release of water from KRS and Kabini towards TN due to immense pressure from the local farmers of Mandya and Mysuru.

Karnataka has said there is no "acceptable" distress formula for the release of water to TN and the normal convention has been that 1/3rd of the inflow which is recieved in the Cauvery basin will be released to TN which is in the downstream.

Sources indicate that TN has been recieving close to about 2,500 to 3,000 cusecs of water over the last few days, considering the inflow into the reservoirs of cauvery basin is roughly 10,000 cusecs.

It is said, till date as much as 29 TMC has been released for August towards TN, as opposed to the 50 TMC of water which was the verdict passed by the Cauvery Water Tribunal final verdict which was passed in February 2007.

However, Karnataka has disputed this claim citing the river sharing of 50 TMC for August and 192 TMC for the entire year is for a normal year and the state is in a "distress" year this time.
Source - Times of india

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