He criticises Karunanidhi for seeking President’s Rule in Karnataka

The former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda on Thursday criticised Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) chief M. Karunanidhi for demanding President’s Rule in Karnataka in the wake of the State’s decision to stop releasing Cauvery waters to Tamil Nadu.

Addressing a function organised to celebrate the 110 birth anniversary of Loknayak Jayaprakash Narayan here, Mr. Deve Gowda said that Mr. Karunanidhi had opposed the imposition of Article 356 of the Constitution (President’s Rule) on various occasions earlier.

However, he was now seeking the imposition of President’s Rule in Karnataka, Mr. Deve Gowda said.

Urging political leaders in Tamil Nadu to exercise restraint while making statements on the Cauvery waters issue, he noted that some of the statements made recently by political leaders there would be detrimental to the federal structure.

They were not prepared to understand the fact that Karnataka was facing a problem because of the failure of monsoon.

“Leave alone agriculture needs, people do not have sufficient water to drink. How can they expect Karnataka to release water?” he asked. Political parties in Tamil Nadu have been accusing Karnataka of not abiding by the decision of the Supreme Court and the Cauvery River Authority, he said and added that “they are not prepared to understand the ground reality.

“My attempts to explain the situation have failed to yield result, as Tamil Nadu MPs obstructed when I raised the issue in Parliament.”

If Tamil Nadu failed to show magnanimity in sharing the river waters during distress, the federal structure was bound to suffer, he said.

Admitting that Karnataka had stumbled in convincing the Cauvery River Authority and the Supreme Court, he said that he was not blaming anybody and did not want to politicise the issue.

“Priority should be given to protecting the interests of the people,” he added.

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