Goa CM says no talks with Yediyurappa on Mahadayi river dispute
Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant on Thursday rubbished reports that he was scheduled to hold talks with his Karnataka counterpart and BJP colleague B S Yediyurappa to discuss the contentious issue of sharing water of the Mhadei river.
The Congress had accused the ruling BJP of putting the party’s interests over state’s after Yediyurappa claimed he was scheduled to speak with the Goa Chief Minister later this week on the protracted dispute.
The river is called Mahadayi in Karnataka.
“I am not going to meet anyone and there is nothing scheduled. I have no proposal and nobody has spoken to me about this. I have no intimation of the Karnataka Chief Minister coming here,” Sawant told reporters here.
He denied that his administration was looking to talk with Karnataka on the issue and said that the government could not compromise the state’s interest ‘even a little bit.’
“There is no question of seeking an out of court settlement. We are not ready to compromise even a little bit. Goa needs to get water the same way that it has been getting for so many years,” Sawant said.
Yediyurappa had told reporters in Bengaluru that he planned to meet Sawant later this week in an attempt to find an amicable solution to the issue.
Union Minister Pralhad Joshi, who hails from Karnataka, had said a ‘negotiated settlement’ is the best way forward.
“I can only suggest at this moment that concerned CMs can sit and talk and try to resolve the issue and the matter has already been to the Tribunal and Tribunal has given its award, but in spite of that negotiated settlement will be a better settlement,” Joshi had said.
Over the last decade and a half, Goa has consistently resisted holding talks with Karnataka holding firm in its stance that it wasn’t willing to allow Karnataka to divert any water from the Mhadei river.
In a verdict delivered in August last year, the Mahadayi Interstate Water Disputes Tribunal awarded Karnataka a total of 13.42 Thousand Million Cubic Feet (TMC) of water as against their demand for 36.556 TMC of water.
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