Centre has promised help to resolve Mekedatu project issue: Karnataka CM

Karnataka Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa with Union Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhavat in Bengaluru on July 13, 2021.  

A day after Tamil Nadu unanimously passed a resolution urging the Union government not to accord permission to Karnataka for the Mekedatu project in the Cauvery basin, Karnataka Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa said that Union Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat had assured help to the State in resolving all pending irrigation projects, including Mekedatu.

Mr. Yediyurappa and Mr. Shekhawat reviewed drinking water and irrigation projects in Karnataka on Tuesday. The Chief Minister told reporters that Karnataka government had urged Mr. Shekhawat to grant environmental clearances for irrigation projects and Mekedatu project.

T.N.’s resolution

On July 12, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M.K. Stalin chaired an all-party meeting in Chennai where a resolution was passed saying no construction must be undertaken at Mekedatu without permission of the downstream States as per the Supreme Court’s judgment. Karnataka government has, however, insisted that the Centre had no reason to stall the proposal since drinking water was a major component of the project.

Answering a question after the meeting on Tuesday with Mr. Shekhawat, Mr. Yediyurappa said, “I don’t want to discuss Tamil Nadu or any other State. We have got every right and we are going to start the work.” He had earlier written to Mr. Stalin inviting him for a discussion on the issue.

Minister for Home, Law and Parliamentary Affairs Basavaraj Bommai said Mr. Shekhawat had promised to provide “justice to Karnataka” on Mekedatu project. The State had been executing the project as per the Cauvery Water Dispute Tribunal Award by honouring water allocation made to three States, he said, adding that the government also submitted a memorandum to the Union Minister seeking early clearances for projects.

Prior to the meeting, KPCC president D.K. Shivakumar had tweeted: “Today, as Union Minister of Jal Shakti Sri @GSSJodhpur will be conducting a meeting with CM Sri @BSY, we hope that the date of initiation of Mekedatu will be finalised. This project represents hope for Karnataka, and we expect the CM will leave no stone unturned to fulfil it.”

Other projects

The Chief Minister said the State government had also urged the Jal Shakti Minister to issue Krishna Tribunal Award gazette notification and pending permissions from the Centre for Kalasa-Banduri and Yettinahole projects in Karnataka. Karnataka urged the Union Minister to declare Upper Bhadra project as a national project, Mr. Yediyurappa said.

Home and Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Basavaraja Bommai, Minor Irrigation Minister J.C. Madhuswamy, and Chief Secretary P. Ravi Kumar were present.

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Printable version | Sep 18, 2021 7:34:44 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/centre-has-promised-clearances-for-mekedatu-project-karnataka-cm/article35299121.ece

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