Cong govt agrees to release Cauvery water to TN, BJP-JDS say to appease DMK

Bengaluru, Aug 17 (UNI) A war of words have erupted between the Congress government in Karnataka and Opposition parties after the former agreed to release 9,000 cusecs of Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu.

The verbal war began after Karnataka Deputy Chief Minister DK Shivakumar accused Karnataka BJP and former CM Basavaraj Bommai for politicising a legal issue like inter-state water dispute.

“Bommai knows the law, and he should not politicise it so much. We have informed our farmers. But they will protest and tell us not to release water. But will the court listen?,” Shivakumar told a section of the media here.

The government is releasing water to Tamil Nadu to show respect to the law, and it is not releasing 27 TMC water as demanded by Tamil Nadu, but releasing lesser water to the neighbouring state, he said.

“But if they ask why we released the water, they should know that Bommai has the key to this. Central government has the key to release water,” Shivakumar said.

Calling Shivakumar’s statement as irresponsible, Bommai said the government’s decision to release Cauvery water is an attempt to please the Dotted-INDIA partner, DMK.

“He (Shivakumar) has said that I should not politicise. I am the last person to politicise the inter-state water dispute. But at the outset, the way he has spoken, it seems that they are more concerned about politics and they want to please their I.N.D.I.A. partner DMK in Tamil Nadu,” he said.

Bommai said it is Congress government’s duty to safeguard the interest of the people. “It is so surprising that this Deputy CM says that I don’t have a key of the dam. Then who has the key?” he asked.

On Shivakumar asking farmers to approach the court, the former Chief Minister said the Deputy Chief Minister should know that individuals do not have locus standi in inter-water disputes other than the state.

“You are the government. You have got all the authority. This minimum thing, the Shivakumar should know,” he said.

JDS leader and former Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy alleged that the Congress government has taken the decision to release 10 TMC of water to Tamil Nadu single-handedly without taking any advice from experts.

“This is to please Tamil Nadu and DMK. This government has taken the decision to release the water despite shortage of water. Is there any direction from the Cauvery Water Management Board to release the water?” he questioned.

For political gains, the Congress government has totally demolished and backstabbed the interests of Kannadigas and Karnataka farmers, Kumaraswamy said.

Congress MLA Rizwan Arshad said the government is certainly looking into the interest of the state, but it has to take care of the legal framework under which the government has to operate.

He said BJP has no moral authority to talk about Cauvery and Mahadayi water disputes. “The betrayal was by the BJP. You had a central government headed by the BJP. You also had a state government led by the BJP. Why did they not try to solve this issue?

BJP has no moral authority to talk about the Cauvery dispute or Mahadayi dispute or any other dispute,” Arshad said.

Former Minister and BJP MLA Dr CN Ashwath Narayan said the present Congress government has let down the people of the state completely. The state government has compromised with Tamil Nadu and DMK government, only to keep Dotted-INDIA together to stitch, he alleged.

The BJP governments released water to Tamil Nadu after good rainfall in Karnataka, but the situation today does not permit them to release water to Tamil Nadu, he said.

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