‘Farmers should express solidarity with Chief Minister’

While Cauvery Delta Farmers’ Welfare Association (CDFA) has wholeheartedly welcomed the Supreme Court’s attempt to ensure gazetting of the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal final award, Federation of Farmers’ Associations of Delta Districts has said that Tamil Nadu should not be satisfied with mere gazetting.

Working president of the CDFA Mahadhanapuram V.Rajaram said that the Central government is proving to be extremely indifferent towards the welfare of State as neither the Congress nor the BJP had been elected from Tamil Nadu in the last four decades. “We are totally dependent on the apex court for justice,” he reckons. Mr.Rajaram also wanted the farming community to express its solidarity with Chief Minister Jayalalithaa in her endeavour to get the tribunal award gazetted at the earliest as that would at least ensure the riparian rights of Tamil Nadu.

However, Aarupathi P.Kalyanam, general secretary of the federation, while assuring all cooperation to the State government, wanted it to seek at least 325 tmcft of water as the tribunal’s award of 192 tmcft would not be sufficient for the established ayacuts of Tamil Nadu and its drinking water needs .

Karnataka which had only 6.83 lakh acres of ayacut in 1970 using 177 tmcft was permitted by the tribunal to have an ayacut of 11.2 lakh acres in the interim award and 18.85 lakh acres in the final award using 270 tmcft.

But, Tamil Nadu which has been raising kuruvai in 5.5 lakh acres for ages has now been permitted to have an ayacut of only 1.85 lakh acres. Besides, though we have an established ayacut of 29.26 lakh acres we have now been permitted to have an ayacut of only 24.71 lakh acres. For this the final award has prescribed only 192 tmcft

Mr.Kalyanam also pleaded that Cauvery Management Board that would come into existence after the gazetting of the tribunal should be a “totally autonomous” body with control over the entire Cauvery system.

Otherwise, it would function like a “toothless tiger” on the lines of the Cauvery River Authority and the Cauvery Monitoring Committee.