Mekedatu row: Tamil Nadu's objections illegal and meaningless, says Karnataka CM
Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai on Thursday termed Tamil Nadu's objections to Cauvery Water Management Authority (CWMA) discussing the controversial Mekedatu project at its meeting as "illegal" and "meaningless".
Expressing confidence that Karnataka's DPR on the Mekedatu project will get approval, Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai on Thursday termed Tamil Nadu's objections to Cauvery Water Management Authority (CWMA) discussing the project at its meeting as "illegal" and "meaningless". He reiterated that CWMA has the powers to discuss and decide on the matter.
"We need not respond to everything they (TN) say; there is no stay from the Supreme Court; already the matter has been referred to CWMA; 15 meetings have taken place, and CWMA has the powers and accordingly it may call a meeting next week. We have put forward our case and we are confident about our DPR (Detailed Project Report) getting approved," Bommai said.
Addressing reporters here, he said there is nothing that is legal or has any meaning in what Tamil Nadu is saying. Bommai was responding to a question regarding Tamil Nadu Water Resources Minister Duraimurugan taking strong exception to his statement on the neighbouring state's (TN) letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking his intervention to restrain the CWMA from discussing the Mekedatu project in its meeting next week.
Mekedatu is a multi-purpose (drinking water and power) project proposed by Karnataka, which involves building a balancing reservoir near Kanakapura in Ramanagara district. Neighbouring Tamil Nadu has been opposing the project, raising apprehensions that the state would be affected if the project takes shape. The project, once completed, is aimed at ensuring drinking water to Bengaluru and neighbouring areas (4.75 TMC) and also can generate 400 MW power, and the estimated cost of the project is ₹9,000 crore.
To a query on holding zilla and taluk panchayat polls, Bommai said once Justice Bhaktavatsalam committee tasked with three-step verification of political representation of OBCs, submits it report, the government will provide reservations accordingly and hold elections. "The process of providing backward class reservation is on; in the first stage it is being looked into for Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) by the (committee), after that the entire state's zilla and taluk panchayats will be looked into," he said.
On the textbook controversy, the CM said, he has asked Primary and Secondary Education Minister B C Nagesh to rectify whatever needs to be in the revised textbook. "We are open to any suggestion, so I have asked the textbooks to be posted on the website. There are certain objections regarding the revised textbooks and the previous textbooks, the contents of which have not been changed and kept as it is in the revised text book. Our government is open to rectifying if anything needs to be," he said.
Hitting out at the Congress for holding protests against ED questioning its leader Rahul Gandhi, the CM said, "for the grand old party to protest against a corruption case is a tragedy. If they continue it, people will ask them to permanently go home."