- Karnataka State counsel Fali S Nariman argues the pre-independence water sharing agreement cannot hold now.
- The changed geographical scope of the Cauvery basin has to be considered now.
- The earlier ruling with regard to Mullaperiyar dam dispute between Kerala and Tamil Nadu is wrong.
- Mandya district put on high alert following intelligence report about possible riot following SC ruling going against State.
Karnataka government’s counsel Fali S Nariman, argued before the Supreme Court on Tuesday, on the lines of Kerala’s argument with regard to Mullaperiyar Dam and stated that the agreement drawn before the independence are unscientific and appealed to nullify them. He also argued that the SC bench had earlier passed a wrong ruling with regard to the dispute between Kerala and Tamil Nadu in the Mullaperiyar Dam case. The Supreme Court special bench began its final hearing of the appeals of Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu with regard to sharing of water questioning the award of the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal (CWDT).
Arguing for Karnataka Fali S Nariman appealed that the 1892 and 1924 agreements drawn between Madras Presidency and Mysore Maharaja should be declared invalid as the principles of equal distribution was not adopted at that time. These agreements do not hold ground after independence under the Indian Freedom Act 1947 section 7 (1), argued Nariman.
He also impressed upon the court about the discriminatory attitude of the British Secretary towards Mysore kingdom by unilaterally deciding, exhibiting supremacy, in cancelling the permission granted to construct a dam at KRS with 44 TMC capacity sanctioned by the Indian Judiciary and the Indian Government of that time. The CWDT based its decree on this pre-independence agreement, under the natural flow principle, sanctioning 80 per cent of the water rights to Tamil Nadu, which is not right, he argued.
The old Mysore kingdom became Mysore State and now is a part of Karnataka and the geographical scope of the Cauvery basin has changed. A big city like Bengaluru requires Cauvery water. The CDWT has included very minor part of Bengaluru under consideration and major part of Bengaluru is kept outside the purview of Cauvery basin.
The SC bench has not quoted a significant ruling by the SC and has issued a wrong ruling with regard to dispute between Kerala and Tamil Nadu in Mullaperiyar dam case, he said. Also though an agreement was signed between Travancore kingdom and Madras in 1888, subsequently another agreement was also signed between Kerala and Tamil Nadu governments. The Karnataka has never agreed to both 1892 and 1924 agreements. Now, the State has the challenge of convincing the SC as to why the Mullaperiyar ruling upholding the pre-independence agreement cannot be applied to Karnataka now. The State advocates argued for 5 hours on Tuesday.
The Supreme Court has assured that the hearing of Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu questioning the decree of CDWT will be closed within 15 days. The bench comprises of justice Deepak Mishra, justice A M Khanwilkar and justice Amitav Roy. The hearing will continue of Wednesday.
Meanwhile Mandya district has been put on high alert as a precautionary measure. Police held a march in the city. The intelligence report has warned of rioting following SC ruling in case going against the State. Tight bandobast has been arranged around KRS. At sensitive spots in the district a total of 10 state and 25 district reserve police squad, 400 home guards, 2000 officials and 500 outside staff have been deployed.
Last Updated 31, Mar 2018, 6:44 PM