New Delhi: Karnataka chief minister Siddaramaiah has called for a meeting of the cabinet and all parties to discuss Karnataka’s response to the latest Supreme Court order directing the state to release 6,000 cusecs of Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu till Friday despite its assembly resolution.
The Times of India quoted Siddaramaiah as saying, “We are committed to protecting the interests of farmers and the people of Karnataka. The cabinet meeting will discuss the pros and cons of implementing the court order and seek the opinion of floor leaders, MLAs and MPs of the Cauvery basin, legal team and technical experts, before taking a final call.”
The Supreme Court on Tuesday also called for a political solution to the impasse by convening of a meeting of chief ministers of the two states and the Centre.
According to the report by Times of India, all major parties in the state said they would back the decision of the state and urged the chief minister not to release water to Tamil Nadu.
The apex court asked Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi to facilitate a meeting of the executive heads of both states with the Centre over the next two days to find a resolution to the impasse.
“We think it appropriate that Karnataka releases 6,000 cusecs water to Tamil Nadu in three days by following the order passed by us, despite the resolution passed by the assembly,” a bench comprising Justices Dipak Misra and U.U. Lalit said.
After the order by the Supreme Court, chief minister Siddaramaiah called for a meeting of the cabinet and all parties to discuss Karnataka’s response.
While the order was being dictated by the bench, senior advocate F.S. Nariman, appearing for Karnataka, vehemently opposed any direction asking the state to release water, saying there was “no logic in it” and the order amounted to “a direct confrontation”.
Meaning, in court, senior advocate Shekhar Naphade, appearing for Tamil Nadu, blamed Karnataka’s “obstructionist and obstinate” attitude and submitted: “On instruction, I am saying that the state (Tamil Nadu) is fed up. We are simply tired of this litigation. We are not getting what is our legitimate rights.”
“We are in a federal structure and in a democracy like India, no state can say it will not obey the Supreme Court’s order. You cannot pick up fight with everyone. It is not about Karnataka or Tamil Nadu or any state, there has to be federal cooperativism,” the bench said, asking both states to cooperate in finding a solution to the water feud.
The bench, on being repeatedly pursued by Tamil Nadu to get its orders enforced, said “Have patience for few days.
This is not an ordinary litigation. Let us see how things shape up.”
In its plea before the apex court yesterday, Karnataka had sought modification of its order asking it to release 6,000 cusecs of Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu, saying it could release the water only by the end of the year, as it first needs to provide for its own state for drinking purposes.
The Karnataka assembly had last week passed a unanimous resolution during a special session directing the state to release the water only for drinking purposes to Bengaluru and regions surrounding Cauvery basin.
(with PTI inputs)