The former Prime Minister, H. D. Deve Gowda, has suggested that Karnataka and Tamil Nadu could sit together and try to find a solution to the Cauvery water issue and the Centre could facilitate this.
Keeping the interests of farmers of both the States, a solution could be worked out, particularly on how to share the water in a distress situation like this as Karnataka is undergoing the worst period, he said on Thursday.
Mr. Gowda, who met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Union Water Resources Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal and discussed the issue in the last two days, told The Hindu that there was only a live storage of 68 tmc ft of water left in the reservoirs in Krishnarajasagar, Hemavathi, Harangi and Kabini. The south-west monsoon, which brings rains to the State, had already ended with a deficit. If 9,000 cusecs of water was released as per the Supreme Court order to Tamil Nadu, another 11-12 tmc ft would vanish.
“How is it possible to manage the situation with the remaining water to irrigate the standing crops in Karnataka as well as to supply drinking water in Bangalore, Mysore, Mandya, Hassan, Ramnagar, Tumkur cities and 24 remaining towns,” he wondered.
This water had to be managed till June, 2013, when the south-west monsoon begins again, as the north-east monsoon (which normally begins in October) was of no use to Karnataka.
Unlike Tamil Nadu, cooperation and coordination among the political leaders was missing in Karnataka to take up the people’s cause, he felt.