Asks Manmohan to convene Cauvery River Authority meet
Chennai: Charging Karnataka with “unjustly utilising” Cauvery water for summer irrigation, Tamil Nadu CM Jayalalithaa asked Prime Minister Manmhohan Singh to convene a meeting of the Cauvery River Authority to discuss the issue.
Karnataka has been “unjustly utilising” the water for summer irrigation from February to May by depleting storage in its four major reservoirs, she said in a letter. The combined gross storage in the four major reservoirs of Karnataka as on February 1, 2012, was 58.50 TMC ft and on May 14, it was 28.176 TMC ft, Jayalalithaa claimed.
“Karnataka had depleted a storage of about 30.33 TMC ft from 1.2.2012 to 14.5.2012, besides utilising the flows of about 11 TMC ft.” Thus, the total utilization during the period was about 41 TMC ft, she said. Due to depletion of storage during summer, Karnataka “impounds” initial monsoon flows in its dams and released water only when they become surplus, she said.
She said a solution was eluding the finalisation of Distress Sharing Formula evolved by Central Water Commission, ultimately depriving Tamil Nadu of adequate water which should have been released by Karnataka either as per Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal’s interim order or by the formula evolved.
The Cauvery Monitoring Committee in its 24th meeting had decided to refer the formula to the Cauvery River Authority for consideration when noticeable distress condition occurs in future. “Such a distress situation may arise at any time,” she said.
She alleged that Karnataka was also not furnishing year-wise details of the area under irrigation though the Tribunal’s interim order specifies that Karnataka shall not increase its area under irrigation beyond 11.20 lakh acres.