Cauvery dispute: Political parties worry formation of management board will not benefit Karnataka

Most of the members were adamant that the state government could not let the formation of the Cauvery Management Board take place

photo courtesy: Mint

India Today Bureau

Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Thursday held an all-party meeting to discuss the ramifications of the Supreme Court ruling that took place on February 16. Members representing all the political parties were present and put forth their views on the court's ruling that increased Karnataka's share of water from 270 thousand million cubic feet (tmcft) to 284.75 tmcft.

State water resource minister MB Patil who briefed the media said the CM informed all legislators from different political parties about the SC judgement and contents. He told India Today that all the members expressed their concern over the judgement and sought clarifications from the Advocate General. Most of the members were adamant that the state government could not let the formation of the Cauvery Management Board take place. They claimed this would be detrimental to the interests of the state. However, Patil stated that the state government will take its next steps only after the scheduled meeting of Chief Secretaries of all Cauvery riparian states to be held on Friday. The meeting will take place in New Delhi to discuss the Supreme Court verdict that said the Cauvery Management Board should be formed within six weeks and that this time limit will not be extended further. Stating he did not want to comment on the management board, Patil said, "It will be a redressal forum and under section 6 (A) of the Inter-State Water Disputes Act, 1956 all the water disputes in the nation need a mechanism and this need not be a management board." He further added that this would be a temporary or permanent committee depending on whenever there would be a dispute. The state government will take a decision after the Chief Secretaries meet and all their decisions will be based on the advice of the legal team. The leader of Opposition in the Assembly and former BJP CM Jagadish Shettar said his party wanted to know from the Karnataka legal team whether a review petition or an appeal should be filed in the Supreme Court. For CM Siddaramaiah, the steps that will be taken from now on will be extremely important considering the fact that in the Old Mysuru region, which is the Cauvery basin, there are 83 seats for the taking. The fight here is mostly between the Congress and the JD(S).

(With inputs from Ipshita Guha)

Ipshita Guha is a student of NSoJ and is an intern with India Today channel