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Cauvery row: Tamil Nadu political parties, farmers ask Centre to step in

CauveryWaterDispute Updated: Sep 22, 2016 12:52 IST
KV Lakshmana
Cauvery row

Former PM HD Deve Gowda and Karnataka chief minister Siddaramaiah, Karnataka at an all-party meeting on the Cauvery water-sharing issue at Vidhan Soudha in Bengaluru on Wednesday. (PTI)

Political parties and farmers bodies in Tamil Nadu condemned the Karnataka government on Thursday for defying the Supreme Court order on Cauvery waters and urged the Centre to set up the water management board immediately.

AIADMK spokesperson CR Saraswathi told Hindustan Times that it was time the Centre and even the Congress central leadership intervened and ensured that Siddaramaiah followed the top court’s judgment.

“What he has done is very unfair and unjust. And if a CM disobeys the law, what will happen to the common man and will there be a rule of law in that state?” Saraswathi asked.

On Wednesday, Karnataka deferred the release of Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu disregarding a Supreme Court order that had sparked large-scale violence in country’s IT hub Bengaluru last week.

Read: Karnataka defers release of Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu

The decision was taken at an emergency cabinet meeting called a day after the top court revised an earlier order and asked the Karnataka government to release 6,000 cusecs of water to the neighbouring state until September 27.

PMK chief S Ramadoss said Karnataka chief minister S Siddaramaiah was stirring a constitutional crisis by creating a confrontation between the legislature and judiciary. He should, in fact, be taught a strict lesson, the PMK chief said in a statement.

He added that Karnataka might pass a resolution against giving water to Tamil Nadu at the special assembly session convened on September 23 on the issue.

Ramadoss accused the Karnataka government of lying that it had no water to share and added that the Karnataka CM may cite this as a reason when the case comes up for hearing on September 27 in the Supreme Court.

A DMK leader also echoed similar sentiments and said Prime Minister Narendra Modi must intervene in the matter and its president M Karunanidhi asked the PM to set up the Cauvery River Water Management Board immediately.

The Supreme Court on Tuesday has directed the Centre to constitute within four weeks a Cauvery water management board as directed by the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal in its award in 2007.

Read: Understanding the Cauvery dispute: From SC order to possible solutions

The farmers’ bodies in the state have expressed dismay and shock over the Karnataka government’s refusal to release the water and demanded that the central government must ensure justice to Tamil Nadu farmers.

BR Pandian, president of Tamil Nadu Federation of Farmers’ Associations, said “the Tamil Nadu government must file a formal complaint against the Karnataka government,” in the apex court.

Pandian said the Karnataka government was being aided by Union minister Sadanand Gowda, who is from Karnataka, and added that the TN government must also file a complaint against him for obstructing dispensation of justice.

He added that the matter now rests with Union water resources minister Uma Bharati and PM Modi to ensure justice and also praised Tamil Nadu CM J Jayalalithaa for securing a favourable court verdict.

The farmers’ leader too demanded that Centre immediately constitute the Cauvery River Water Management Board that will sort out the problem once and for all.