Reject Karnataka’s proposal for Mekedatu: EPS urges Centre

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami has said Karnataka’s proposal to construct a reservoir across river Cauvery at Mekedatu was untenable and ought to be rejected outright and urged the Centre against giving its nod for the project following a fresh appeal by the upper riparian state.

Palaniswami reiterated Tamil Nadu’s stand on the issue and urged Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar and Union Jal Sakthi Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, to reject Karnataka’s proposal outright. He also requested them to take immediate action in the matter.

The chief minister, in his letter to both union ministers, pointed out that the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal and the Supreme Court had already found that the existing storage facilities available in the Cauvery basin, were adequate for storing and distributing water to the lower riparian States as per the monthly schedule prescribed by it.

He told them the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal and the Supreme Court “have found that the existing storage facilities available in the Cauvery Basin are adequate for storing and distributing water to the lower riparian states as per the monthly schedule prescribed by it.”

“Therefore, the proposal of Karnataka to build a reservoir is ex-facie untenable and ought to be rejected outright,” he said. The chief minister also recalled that Tamil Nadu had filed a Miscellaneous Application before the Supreme Court against the proposal of Karnataka for constructing a reservoir and also a contempt petition against all concerned, and the matters were pending in the SC.

The chief minister recalled that an Expert Appraisal Committee (EAC) for River Valley and Hydro-electric Projects of the Environment Ministry in its July meeting had “deferred the proposal of Karnataka’s Mekedatu project.”

Pointing out that the Expert Appraisal Committee for River Valley and Hydro-electric Projects in the meeting held on July 19, deferred the proposal of Karnataka’s Mekedatu project, the chief minister said, “Now, Karnataka has again approached the Expert Appraisal Committee for River Valley and Hydro-electric Projects, seeking approval of Terms of Reference for Mekedatu project.

Palaniswami recalled he had earlier written to him in July requesting the union minister to reject and return Karnataka’s proposal as it was against the final order of the Tribunal and the February 2018 apex court judgment.