Karnataka To Go Ahead With ‘Controversial’ Mekedatu Project, Assures CM Yediyurappa Even As TN Opposes Dam Work On Kaveri
A day after Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Stalin objected to the proposed dam project on river Kaveri at Mekedaatu, Karnataka CM B S Yediyurappa has reiterated that there was no thought about backtracking on it.
Clarifying that there was ‘no question of stopping it’, Yediyurappa said the Karnataka government would implement the project within legal bounds.
He also reminded that he had written to Stalin on saturday asking him to facilitate a smooth execution of the same as it would benefit people from both states. "They have not responded positively. Yet, we will implement the project," he said, as quoted.
“The implementation of the said project in no way affects the interests of the farming communities of Tamil Nadu,” Yediyurappa had stated in his letter to Stalin, as reported.
Home Minister Basavaraj Bommai called the ‘tone and tenor’ of Stalin’s response to Yediyurappa’s letter inappropriate.
“Tamil Nadu has objected to all our projects from KRS to till now. As the government has changed there, our intention was to make them aware that this project was aimed at drinking water and power to Karnataka, and to manage water between both states during distress year," Bommai said, as reported.
As quoted by ANI, Bommai said "We will continue the legal fight against Tamil Nadu for the rights of the farmers of Cauvery Valley in the state of Karnataka. We are confident that we will win. We will implement the Mekedatu plan. We will get all the clearances required by the central government based on the Supreme Court's order and direction."
Meanwhile the state’s opposition parties took offence to Yediyurappa’s letter to Stalin saying there wasnt a need for any such ‘requests’.
Calling the letter by Yediyurappa‘needless’, Congress leader and former Chief Minister Siddharamaiah said the state didn’t have to seek the neighbouring state’s permission for ‘constructing a balancing reservoir within our (Karnataka’s) territory’.
State Congress president D K Shivakumar said the letter was a sign of lack of political will and intent. He tweeted asking why the CM couldnt simply ‘carry on with the process’ given that the Congress party had during its tenure, ‘already began the process of floating tenders for Mekedatu project’.
Meanwhile, Tamil Nadu Water Resource Minister is said to have met Union Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat earlier today regarding the project and the Kaveri dispute among others. The project originally proposed in 2013 is a multipurpose project estimated to cost Rs 9000 crore and will serve both states. Under this, a balancing reservoir will be built at Mekedaatu near Kanakapura, in Ramanagara district. While it would provide drinking water, it will also generate 400 megawatts of power.
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