Andhra Pradesh refuses mediation for settling Krishna water sharing dispute with Telangana
Andhra Pradesh Government on Wednesday told the Supreme Court that the Krishna river water sharing dispute involving the legal fight between the states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana required adjudication and refused mediation, as suggested by the SC earlier.
Andhra Pradesh Government on Wednesday told the Supreme Court that the Krishna river water sharing dispute involving the legal fight between the states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana required adjudication and refused mediation, as suggested by the SC earlier. After the Supreme Court was apprised by the Andhra Pradesh state government lawyer, G Umapathy, that the Krishna river water dispute sharing matter involving AP and Telangana, will require legal adjudication, as mediation didn't work, a two-judge bench of the Apex Court, led by the Chief Justice of India (CJI) Nuthalapati Venkata Ramana, said, we will list the case before another bench.
"State doesn't agree to mediation as suggested by the Supreme Court," Umapathy told the Supreme Court bench also comprising of Justice Surya Kant, besides, CJI Ramana. "We cannot force you (AP Government) if you don't want mediation. Let the matter be listed before another Bench," the CJI said.
The Solicitor General (SG) Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Union of India (UOI) said that we have no objection in you (Andhra Pradesh government) hearing the matter. The CJI Ramana had on August 2, 2021, recused from hearing the case and said that he belongs to both the states -- Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. He had said, he thereby did not want to adjudicate the legal issues involved in the case.
At the same time, the CJI had on August 2, said and asked the parties involved in the case to settle the matter through mediation otherwise, it would have to be sent to another bench. Andhra Pradesh government had on July 14 approached the Supreme Court against Telangana and its officials "unjust act" of alleging the denial of "legitimate share" of drinking, irrigation water to its people.
The petition, a copy accessed by ANI, stated that the State of Andhra Pradesh (AP) is constrained to move the Apex Court under Article 32 of the Constitution of India to protect the fundamental right of its people, including the right to life of its citizens, drinking /Irrigation/ water, as rights of people are being seriously impaired and infringed on account of unconstitutional, illegal and unjust acts on part of State of Telangana and its officials. The petition copy further had said that the illegal acts of certain officials of the Telangana government resulted in the deprival of the people of Andhra Pradesh's legitimate share of water for drinking and irrigation purposes.
The petition had been filed by the AP government because Telangana is refusing to follow decisions taken in the Apex Council constituted under the AP Reorganization Act, directions of Krishna River Management Board (KRMB) constituted under the 2014 Act and directions of the Government of India. More significantly, Telangana was clearly in violation of a binding Award, popularly known as "Bachwat Award" made on May 31, 1976, and expressed provisions of the 2014 Act, whereby Andhra Pradesh was bifurcated into Telangana and AP, the petition filed by the AP government said.
"This has caused immense hardship for people of State of Andhra Pradesh as availability of water has been seriously prejudiced by depletion in Srisailam Dam project as well as other projects such as the Nagarjuna Sagar Project and the Pulichintala Project," the petition, filed before the Supreme Court, claimed. The Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh in this regard has also written to the Prime Minister on July 1 and 7, 2021 and sought his urgent intervention in view of serious threat to the right to life of tens of millions of citizens of Andhra Pradesh, the petition copy had said.
Additionally, the AP Chief Minister had already also addressed letters to the Ministry of Jal Shakti on July 1 and 5, 2021. Despite, the Reorganization having taken place in 2014, and the Apex Council having been created in time, the jurisdiction of the Krishna River Management Board (KRMB) Board was to be declared under Section 87 of 2014 Act, has not been notified as yet. This is resulting in illegal acts on part of the State of Telangana and its Authorities, creating serious Constitutional issues, the petition filed before the Supreme Court said. (ANI)
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