Yeddyurappa doesn't want PM's intervention, but Siddaramaiah and Deve Gowda do.

High political drama in Karnataka over Cauvery BJP threatens to boycott all party meet
news Cauvery Dispute Wednesday, September 21, 2016 - 16:24

Political drama is afoot in Karnataka with Chief Minister Siddaramaiah under serious pressure from all sides to reject Tuesday’s Supreme Court order to release more water to Tamil Nadu.

Siddaramaiah is under pressure to reject the Supreme Court’s order to release 6,000 cusecs to Tamil Nadu from September 21-27 from within his own party, the Opposition and farmers’ groups.

Former chief minister and BJP state president BS Yeddyurappa has upped the ante, informing the state government that the party would boycott the all-party meeting scheduled for Wednesday. However, there are reports that Mysuru-Kodagu MP PRatam Simha might attend the meeting.

During a meeting held on Wednesday morning, the state Cabinet decided that a final decision would be taken only after an all-party meeting scheduled for 6pm, following which, another special Cabinet meeting would be held at 8pm.

Speaking to reporters in Shivamogga, Yeddyurappa said that despite holding several cabinet meetings and all-party meetings in the recent past, the state government had not taken a concrete decision to resolve the issue. Therefore, the party had decided not to attend the all-party meeting. Matters came to a head when Tamil Nadu filed a petition with the Supreme Court seeking a direction to Karnataka to release water to the lower riparian state.

Yeddyurappa has demanded that a special legislature session be called immediately to discuss the situation in the state. He tweeted: 





He and Leader of the Opposition in the Legislative Council KS Eshwarappa have both separately expressed support to the Chief Minister if he rejected the Supreme Court’s latest order to release water to Tamil Nadu.

The opposition however, is divided in its opinion on seeking the Prime Minister’s intervention.

While JD (S) supremo HD Deve Gowda has said that the PM can solve the issue, former chief minister Yeddyurappa and the BJP are dead against it.

Deve Gowda, himself a former PM, met Narendra Modi in Delhi and sought his intervention in the resolution of the current flare-up between Tamil Nadu and Karnataka over the Cauvery. He has thrown his weight behind Siddaramaiah who has sought a meeting of the heads of the three states – Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu – and of union territory Puducherry, through which the Cauvery flows.

Yeddyurappa however, maintains that the dispute was between two states and that no central intervention is required. The BJP seems apprehensive that of the two, Tamil Nadu is more powerful at the centre, and that Karnataka would lose out if matters are escalated to the central government.

Senior Congress leader and former chief minister SM Krishna has urged his party colleague Siddaramaiah to take a “tough stand”, but said that the Centre has no role in an inter-state dispute. He also declined to answer on whether the state government should refuse to implement the Supreme Court order.

During his tenure as chief minister, Krishna had refused to implement the order of the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal during a distress year. He was rapped for it when the matter came up in the Supreme Court.

Siddaramaiah has said that the current order was not “implementable”. He had made similar remarks when on September 12, the Karnataka government sought a modification of the Tribunal’s September 5 order in the Supreme Court. However, addressing the media later, Siddaramaiah said that although it was difficult, the state government could not refuse to implement the Supreme Court’s order to release water to Tamil Nadu.

Even as the state government is in a bind, elected representatives from Mandya cutting across party lines have threatened to resign.

K'taka MPs, MLAs, threaten to resign if govt decision on Cauvery is unfavourable

Amid the hullaballoo over the Cauvery dispute, a group of Karnataka MLAs and MPs have threatened to resign in protest against the government inaction.

Many leaders from both Congress and JD(S), especially from Mandya that is the epicentre of the Cauvery water crisis and protests, are planning to resign if the cabinet decision is unfavourable to the state's farmers, said a source close to JD(S) party.

This comes after the latest order from the apex court, which asked the state to release 6,000 cusecs of water every day from September 21 to 28.

However, this is not the first time legislators are rising in protest. Even in 2012, over five JDS leavers submitted their resignation over the same issue. However, this was only submitted to the party chiefs and not to the Speaker of the Assembly.

Puttaraju MP from Mandya district submitted his letter of resignation to the Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan through the district collector.

“…Hence, herewith I am submitting my resignation to my member of Parliament post from Mandya constituency in the interest of farmers of Cauvery Basin,” he said in his letter dated September 20. 

Sources told The News Minute that G Madegowda, who heads the Cauvery Welfare Committee, has asked Mandya legislators of all parties they belong to, to resign in solidarity with the farmers.

JD(S) MLAs DC Thammanna (Maddur) and Srinivas (Mandya), ex-MLA Annadani, and Congress leader and former minister Ambareesh are also likely to join the legislators’ protest in Mandya on Wednesday.

Chief minister Siddaramaiah is under pressure to reject the apex court’s latest order to release water. Even leaders in the Opposition such as KS Eshwarappa have extended their support to the Chief Minister, urging him to reject the order. Speaking to the media, Eshwarappa said that he was even ready to go to jail. A Jail Bharo andolan is being planned by farmers’ groups in Mandya.

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