Farmers' panel may again approach court

BIJAPUR DEC. 7. The president of the Bheema Nadi Neeru Rakshana Raithavarga Samiti, Panchappa Kalburgi, has indicated that his organisation might again approach the Supreme Court seeking a direction to Maharashtra to release water from the Ujani Dam.

Addressing a press conference here on Friday, he said that a decision would be taken in a farmers' meeting to be held by the end of this month. Referring to the recent disposal of the public interest litigation filed by the samiti, he said the apex court had clarified that farmers could approach the court at any time if they faced water scarcity.

Mr. Kalburgi said the Union Government had stated in its affidavit that the problem could be solved by referring it to the new tribunal to be set to look into the disputes related to Krishna waters (the Bheema is a tributary of the Krishna). The samiti had argued that since a ruling by the tribunal would be delayed, it was better if the apex court itself provided relief. However, the court had given the Centre a chance to solve the problem. The court had also kept its doors open for the samiti, he said. Referring to the success of the Congress in the elections to the Legislative Council from the two-seat Bijapur local authorities constituency, Mr. Kalburgi, who lost the election as an All-India Progressive Janata Dal (AIPJD) candidate, urged the newly elected MLCs, Siddu Nyamegouda and S.R. Patil, to raise the problems with the Government.

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