Centre notifies Cauvery Water Management Authority

It will decide on water sharing.

June 01, 2018 07:49 pm | Updated June 02, 2018 02:05 pm IST - New Delhi

Drying up:  A file picture of the Cauvery flowing as a stream in Salem, T.N., after no water was released from Karnataka.

Drying up: A file picture of the Cauvery flowing as a stream in Salem, T.N., after no water was released from Karnataka.

Three days after the Karnataka Assembly election results and three months after the Supreme Court’s order, the Union government on Friday issued a notification for the Cauvery Water Management Authority (CWMA). 

The authority will decide the sharing of the river water among the States of Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu and the Union Territory of Puducherry.

MPs of both the AIADMK and the DMK had stalled the winter session of Parliament over the delay in the formation of the authority. They had accused the BJP government of delaying the formation of the authority for electoral gains in Karnataka.

The authority’s mandate will be to monitor the storage, apportion shares, supervise operation of reservoirs and regulate water releases with the assistance of the Regulation Committee. It will regulate water release by Karnataka at the Biligundulu gauge and discharge station.

The CWMA will determine the total residual storage in the specified reservoirs on June 1 every year. “The share of each State will be determined on the basis of the flows together with the available carry-over storage in the reservoirs,” the notification says.

The withdrawals will be allowed on the basis of the share worked out for each State.

“If the Authority finds that any Government of the party States, namely Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka and Union territory of Puducherry do not cooperate in implementing the decision or direction of the Tribunal, it can seek the help of the Central Government for implementation of the Award of the Tribunal as modified by the Hon’ble Supreme Court vide Order of 16th February, 2018,” the notification says.

Five-year tenure

The chairman of the authority will be appointed by the Central government for a tenure of five years. He has to be a senior and eminent engineer with wide experience in water resource management or an IAS office in the rank of secretary or additional secretary. There will be two part-time members — representatives of the Central Government of the rank of Joint Secretary to be nominated by the Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation and Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare respectively and four part-time members from party States — administrative secretaries in charge of Water Resource Departments of Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and the union territory of Puducherry who shall be nominated by the State governments and Union territory administration respectively.

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