SC to hear matter relating to proposed reservoir at Mekedatu in Karnataka on Aug 10
The Supreme Court Tuesday said it would hear on August 10 the matter relating to the proposed reservoir at Mekedatu in Karnataka across the Inter-State Cauvery river.
The apex court was hearing Tamil Nadu's application seeking to restrain the Cauvery Water Management Authority (CWMA) from deliberating or passing any order or direction concerning the detailed project report for the proposed Mekedatu balancing reservoir-cum-drinking water project pending disposal of the applications concerning the project filed by the state.
The matter came up for hearing before a bench comprising Justices A M Khanwilkar, A S Oka, and J B Pardiwala.
Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Aishwarya Bhati, appearing for the CWMA, sought some time to place an affidavit in the matter. Senior advocate Shyam Divan, appearing for Karnataka, said they have received the rejoinder affidavit filed on behalf of Tamil Nadu on Monday and there are certain averments made on which instructions are awaited.
Senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi appeared for Tamil Nadu.
The bench posted the matter for hearing on August 10.
In its rejoinder to the affidavit filed by Karnataka, the state of Tamil Nadu has said, ''If a new reservoir is constructed across the Cauvery river upstream of Billigundulu, it will result in harnessing the flows from the uncontrolled catchment which was earmarked exclusively to Tamil Nadu.'' In its affidavit filed in the apex court, Karnataka has said that the proposed project at Mekedatu is not intended to cause any prejudice to Tamil Nadu.
''In any case, the question of prejudice or injury which applicant state of Tamil Nadu apprehends are best resolved in the first instance by the CWMA. The applicant state of Tamil Nadu should not be permitted to run away from CWMA,'' Karnataka has said. During the hearing in the apex court on July 20, the Tamil Nadu government had said that the proposed reservoir at Mekedatu would ''severely impact'' the water flow coming to the state.
The Karnataka government had told the bench that the reservoir project is to come up within the state and there is no question of impacting in any manner the water flow which has been directed by the apex court to be released.
Karnataka's counsel had also argued that the application filed by Tamil Nadu was completely misconceived.
The Tamil Nadu government had earlier moved the apex court seeking to restrain Karnataka from proceeding with any activity regarding the proposed construction of a reservoir at Mekedatu.
The top court in 2018 directed the Karnataka government to release 177.25 tmcft of Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu from its inter-state Billigundlu dam.
In its application, the state of Tamil Nadu has said, ''It is submitted that the proposed Mekedatu reservoir project of Karnataka is detrimental to the interest of the farmers of Tamil Nadu, who depend on the waters of Cauvery for their livelihood.''
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