Karnataka

Mekedatu: CWC approves feasibility report

Project won’t affect release of the stipulated quantum of Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu: Minister

In a major development , the Central Water Commission (CWC) has approved the feasibility report of the nearly ₹6,000 crore Mekedatu multi-purpose project across the Cauvery that envisages supplying drinking water to Bengaluru and Ramanagaram districts, besides generation of power. The CWC has now asked the State government — in principle — to prepare and submit a detailed project report (DPR). While the project was conceived in 2013, the State Cabinet, in February 2017, had decided to implement the project that involves building a balancing reservoir across the Cauvery near Kanakapura in Ramanagaram district. The project, however, ran into a controversy after Tamil Nadu opposed it on the grounds that the project violates the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal award.

“This is the first victory to the State’s effort. The project will not come in the way of releasing stipulated quantum of water to Tamil Nadu nor will it be used for irrigation purposes,” Water Resources Minister D.K. Shivakumar told mediapersons on Tuesday. “We are ready to hold talks with Tamil Nadu on this. The next course of action will be decided at a meeting called by the Chief Minister on December 6,” he said.

According to Mr. Shivakumar, when the project was conceived, it was opposed by the then Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa, who had urged the Centre not to approve the project. This resulted in the Union government not taking any stand on the issue.

“The JD(Secular)-Congress coalition, in its budget, had announced that the project will be started if it is approved by the Union government. The State government had also submitted a project report to the CWC in July. Besides, Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy had met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Water Resources Minister Nitin Gadkari to impress upon them the need for implementation of the project,” he added.

In the light of appeals from the State government, Mr. Shivakumar said, “The CWC met recently and approved the initial project report submitted by the government in July. It has asked the State to prepare the DPR in such a manner that the project would not hinder release of the stipulated quantum of Cauvery waters to Tamil Nadu.”

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Printable version | Jul 5, 2020 1:28:01 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/mekedatu-cwc-approves-feasibility-report/article25609250.ece

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