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SC reduces Cauvery water allocation to Tamil Nadu, Karnataka to get more because Bengaluru needs it

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SC reduces Cauvery water allocation to Tamil Nadu, Karnataka to get more because Bengaluru needs it

Court says agreements were not “political arrangements” but were based on public interest; decision valid for 15 years

The Supreme Court on Friday (February 16) ended the long-pending Cauvery river water dispute between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu by clearly demarcating the allocation of Cauvery water among Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Kerala.

The bench comprising of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices Amitava Roy, A M Khanwilkar reduced the allocation of water for Tamil Nadu by 14.75 trillion cusecs (tmcft). Tamil Nadu will now get 404.25 tmcft of Cauvery water instead of 419 tmcft allotted by 207 tribunal.

Karnataka will get an enhanced 14.75 tmcft of water which will now stand at 284.75 tmcft (including 4.75 tmcft for Bengaluru) as against the 2007 Cauvery River Water Disputes Tribunal award of 270 tmcft.  The court’s logic on this was that the state needs more for its industrial use and for the use of the cosmopolitan city of Bengaluru.

However, the bench kept allocation of waters to Kerala i.e. 30 tmcft and to Puducherry i.e. 7 tmcft unchanged as per the 2007 tribunal award.

The bench directed that Karnataka will release 177.25 tmcft of Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu from its inter-state Biligundlu dam while justifying its decision for increased water allocation to Karnataka on account of drinking water requirement and groundwater for Bengaluru residents. The order on Cauvery water allocation will continue for next 15 years, the bench said.

The bench also allowed Tamil Nadu to draw an additional 10 tmcft of groundwater, from a total of 20 tmcft beneath the Cauvery basin.

Upholding the validity of 1892 and 1924 agreements on Cauvery river water allocation, the bench noted that these agreements were not “political arrangements” but were based on public interest. The bench observed: “The 1924 post-Mettur dam agreement expired in 1974. Now the principle of water allocation is based on “equitable apportionment” and not primacy.”

Adjudging inter-state rivers are national assets, the bench stated: “The Constitution gave equal status to all States. No one riparian State can claim full rights over it.”

During the hearing, the bench rejected the Centre’s argument that it was Parliament’s prerogative to finalise the water sharing scheme.

Welcoming the verdict, the Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah said: “This is good news for farmers in Cauvery basin and people of Karnataka.” Tamil Nadu’s AIADMK was careful in commenting on the decrease of allocation and said that it had to study the court’s order deeply before commenting.

Backgrounder

  • The dispute dates back to 1892 when an agreement was filed between the Madras Presidency and Mysore for arbitration but led to a fresh set of disputes. Later, attempts were renewed to arbitrate between the two states under the supervision of the Government of India and a second agreement was signed in 1924.
  • As Kerala and Puducherry also laid claim to a share of the Cauvery water after Independence, a Fact Finding Committee was set up in 1970 to resolve the situation on the ground. The committee submitted its report in 1972 and further studies were conducted by an expert committee. The states reached an agreement in 1976. However, after a new government came to power in Tamil Nadu, it refused to give its consent to the terms of the agreement.
  • Later, in 1986, the Tamil Nadu government appealed to the central government to constitute a tribunal for solving the issue under the Inter-State Water Disputes Act, 1956. However, the tribunal was not set up until the Supreme Court took cognizance of the matter and ordered the central government to do so in 1990.
  • The Cauvery Waters Tribunal was constituted on June 2, 1990. After 16 years of hearing and an interim order, the Tribunal announced its final order in 2007, allocating 419 tmc ft of water to Tamil Nadu and 270 tmc ft to Karnataka. Kerala was given 30 tmc ft and Puducherry got 7 tmc ft. The Tribunal had come to a conclusion that the total availability of water in the Cauvery basin stood at 740 tmc ft. However, both Tamil Nadu and Karnataka filed a review petition before the Tribunal.
  • In 2012, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, as chairman of the Cauvery River Authority, directed the Karnataka government to release 9,000 cusecs of water daily. The Supreme Court slammed the state government as it failed to comply with the order. The government offered an unconditional apology and started the release of water, leading to widespread violent protests.
  • With the Karnataka government continuously failing to release the water to Tamil Nadu, Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa filed an interlocutory petition in the Supreme Court in August 2016, seeking release of water as per the guidelines of the Tribunal. Announcing its verdict in the case, the Supreme Court, on September 5, directed the Karnataka government to release 15,000 cusecs of water to its neighboring state for 10 days.
  • The Supreme Court modified its order and asked Karnataka to release 12,000 cusecs of water every day until September 20, 2016.
  • On September 20, 2017 while reserving its order  Cauvery river water-sharing dispute directed Centre to frame a scheme for the implementation of its orders on river water-sharing between these states and Puducherry after the judgement is pronounced.

2024 Lok Sabha Elections

PM Modi calls for a strong government, says even enemies think 100 times before doing anything

PM Modi pointed out that Pakistan had been troubling India for 70 years and it had bombs in its hands. But today the situation has changed and it has begging bowl in its hands. He said when there is a strong government, enemies tremble

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PM Modi calls for a strong government, says even enemies think 100 times before doing anything

Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed an election rally in Haryana’s Ambala on Saturday and said India’s enemies think 100 times before doing anything against the country when there is a strong government at the Centre. Haryana, which has a total of 10 Lok Sabha seats, will vote in the 6th phase on May 25. In 2019 elections BJP claimed victory in all 10 seats.

PM Modi pointed out that Pakistan had been troubling India for 70 years and it had bombs in its hands. But today the situation has changed and it has begging bowl in its hands. He said when there is a strong government, enemies tremble. Addressing the election rally at Ambala the prime minister asked if a weak government could have changed the situation in Jammu & Kashmir? He recalled the times when there was a Congress government and brave mothers of Haryana used to be worried day and night. He said it has been 10 years now and all of that has stopped.

PM Modi recounted BJP government’s achievements and said they had demolished the wall of Article 370 and Kashmir started moving on the path of development. The prime minister said that a total of 17 days remain to go for 4th June.  He further added that until now in 4 phases of elections, Congress and the INDI Alliance, chaaron khaane chitt ho chuke hain. He said whatever tactics the INDI Alliance used for the country have all been beaten by the public itself.

Addressing the election rally PM Modi said Haryana is a state which has patriotism in its veins and knows anti-national forces very well. The prime minister guaranteed to the people that their dreams are his resolution. PM Modi said there are 4 pillars of Viksit Bharat – poor, youth, women and farmers and he wants to strengthen all these pillars in such a way that the nation becomes strong.

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2024 Lok Sabha Elections

Mallikarjun Kharge accuses PM Modi of inciting people and dividing society through his election speeches

Kharge said no prime minister before Modi has ever indulged in inciting people like he has been doing. He said the prime minister speaks about democracy repeatedly but does not adhere to the tenets of democracy.

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Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge on Saturday attacked Prime Minister Narendra Modi for inciting people and dividing society through his election speeches. Kharge was addressing a press conference of the INDIA bloc, where Shiv Sena (UBT) president, Uddhav Thackeray NCP (SP) chief Sharad Pawar and other leaders were present.

Kharge said no prime minister before Modi has ever indulged in inciting people like he has been doing. He said the prime minister speaks about democracy repeatedly but does not adhere to the tenets of democracy. Responding to PM Modi’s statement that the Congress will bulldoze the Ram mandir in Ayodhya and also restore Article 370 if the INDIA bloc is voted to power Kharge said, they have never used a bulldozer on anyone. The Congress president said PM Modi has the habit of lying and inciting people about things which Congress will never do or the things that are impossible to be implemented.

Kharge further added that he is not answerable to Modi and the Congress will implement what they have promised in their election manifesto. He accused PM Modi of creating divisions wherever he went he tries to create division, speaks of dividing society. Kharge further added that PM Modi had described the Congress manifesto as Muslim League manifesto, but now he is calling it as a Maoist manifesto.

The Congress President assured that reservation has been enshrined in the Constitution which will continue and nobody can touch it. Speaking at the press conference Thackeray said, Achche din are coming from June 4 (when Lok Sabha election results will be declared) when INDIA bloc-led government will come to power at the centre. Thackeray pointed out PM Modi calls Shiv Sena (UBT) as the nakli (fake) Shiv Sena, and there is a possibility that tomorrow he may call RSS as nakli Sangh.  

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India News

Delhi Police arrest Bibhav Kumar for allegedly assaulting AAP MP Swati Maliwal

In her complaint, Swati Maliwal accused Arvind Kejriwal’s personal assistant of repeatedly slapping her and kicking her in the stomach and pelvic area when she went to the Delhi Chief Minister’s residence on May 13.

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The Delhi Police on Saturday arrested Bibhav Kumar, aide and former personal secretary of Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal in connection with the alleged assault of AAP MP Swati Maliwal. The development comes 2 days after Delhi Police registered a case against Kumar following a complaint by Maliwal. In her complaint, Maliwal accused Arvind Kejriwal’s personal assistant of repeatedly slapping her and kicking her in the stomach and pelvic area when she went to the Delhi Chief Minister’s residence on May 13.

On Saturday, AAP minister Atishi claimed the BJP made Swati Maliwal file the FIR using an old ACB case as leverage. She said Anti Corruption Bureau of the BJP has filed a case against Swati Maliwal regarding the illegal recruitment of contractual employees in Delhi Commission for Women. A chargesheet has been filed and the time of conviction is coming and the AAP party said that it believes that Swati Maliwal is being included in the conspiracy by using this case. Atishi said how the entire machinery of BJP, from Delhi Police to the MHA is working, was seen yesterday in Tis Hazari Court.

On Friday, the Delhi Police took Swati Maliwal to the Delhi chief minister’s residence to recreate the crime scene. Her statement was recorded before a magistrate at the Tis Hazari court. A counter-complaint has been filed by Bibhav Kumar with the Civil Lines police station in which he alleged that Maliwal had forcefully and unauthorised entered the Delhi CM’s residence.

 He also claimed that the former Delhi Commission for Women chairperson tried to create a ruckus and assault him. Kejriwal’s aide also claimed that the Rajya Sabha MP intended to harm the AAP chief and he strongly objected. Bibhav Kumar said a copy of the FIR has been sent to all the media houses by the BJP but BJP’s police are saying that they cannot give it to the accused.

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