Cauvery: Ex-PM Deve Gowda writes to Modi seeking appointment of external agency to study situationtext_fields
Bengaluru: Former Prime Minister and national President of Janata Dal (Secular) H.D. Deve Gowda on Monday wrote a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi urging him to appoint an external agency to assess the Cauvery situation.
“I kindly request you to give suitable directions to the Ministry of Jal Shakti to address the following issues with top most priority,” Deve Gowda stated in the letter.
As BJP and JD(S) have announced their alliance in Karnataka recently, the development has gained significance.
"To appoint an external agency independent of the Party States and the Union Government, which has expertise in the field of Integrated Reservoirs Operation Studies, for conducting the studies of all the identified, designated reservoirs in the Cauvery basin, immediately,” he said.
“The report of the studies shall be placed before the CWRC and CWMA for consideration in consultation with the Party States”.
"The same external agency should also be vested with the responsibility of deriving a suitable distress formula taking into consideration all factors like the deficiency in the rainfall, in flows, Reservoir levels, storage positions, crop water requirements, drinking water requirements, the different monsoons in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, actual utilizations under various categories, mandatory discharges to be made by Karnataka to Tamil Nadu, etc., for different scenarios."
"To appoint a committee of five experts, not in any way connected to the Party States and the Union Government to immediately undertake visits to all the reservoirs of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu to take stock of the prevailing ground realities and report not only to the CWMA for taking appropriate action but also to the Supreme Court as a measure of immediate relief".
"The CWMA and the CWRC shall make periodical visits to all the identified designated reservoirs in the Cauvery basin, preferably once in 15 days, to assess the ground realities instead of relying only on the records placed before them.”
Deve Gowda further stated, “I sincerely hope that you will kindly consider my suggestion seriously and issue appropriate directions to the ministry of Jal Shakti in this regard expeditiously.”
He explained in the letter that the rainfall received in the months of August and September is the lowest in the last 123 years. "It is a curse that Karnataka happens to be the upper riparian state in the Cauvery basin and is always obliged to fulfil the demands of the downstream state".
"Tamil Nadu is geographically privileged to be in a better and advantageous position and dictates terms to Karnataka. One of the main reasons for such a situation is that Tamil Nadu is influenced by Southwest monsoon but by North East monsoon which is from October to January," Deve Gowda stated.
Due to the huge shortage of storage in the reservoirs, Karnataka could not release to the extent required the scheduled delivery stipulated in the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal Award dated February 5, 2007, modified with the Supreme Court on February 16, 2018.
However, within the available storage, Karnataka has been releasing water from its reservoirs to the extent possible, he stated in the letter.
With inputs from IANS