Bengaluru, Nov 9 (IANS): In a major development, Deputy Chief Minister D.K. Shivakumar announced on Thursday that the Mekedatu project will be taken up by the Karnataka government.
Speaking to reporters in Bengaluru, Shivakumar stated, “We are commencing the project. We have been told that a date will be fixed in this regard for the inquiry by the Cauvery Water Management Board (CWMA).
“There was an earlier verdict by the Supreme Court in 2018 that 24 tmc water is to be reserved to meet the drinking water purpose of Bengaluru city. We need to present our case effectively on our requirements. In this backdrop we have issued a government order for utilisation of 24 tmc of water. We are also discussing how the issue has to be presented,” Shivakumar explained.
Chief Minister Siddaramaiah had recently stated that the state will intensify its demand for the Mekedatu scheme in the Supreme Court. He said that it would be explained that Tamil Nadu would have no problem with the Mekedatu scheme.
Mekedatu Balancing Reservoir will have a storage capacity of 67 TMC. It will be used for electricity and drinking water. He said that it has been advised that water can be released to Tamil Nadu whenever there is a problem.
Shivakumar had earlier appealed to the Tamil Nadu government to be large-hearted and cooperate to help farmers of both the states by agreeing to implement the Mekedatu project, saying it is enough for both the states to approach courts.
“There is no harm from the Mekedatu project. Let the Tamil Nadu state be large-hearted. We are also large-hearted. Let’s stop approaching courts after fighting each other. Cooperate with the scheme which is for drinking water purpose and beneficial to farmers of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu,” Shivakumar maintained.
Shivakumar reiterated that there will be no harm to Tamil Nadu if the Mekedatu project is implemented. After the padayatra demanding immediate implementation of the Mekedatu project, the government has earmarked Rs 1,000 crore fund for it. But it was not spent, he said. However, the Tamil Nadu government is opposing the project.