Kamal seeks appointment with Tamil Nadu CM to discuss Cauvery Management Board

The actor-turned-politician also appealed to PM Modi saying if the Centre intended to set up the board, it can easily do so.
Kamal seeks appointment with Tamil Nadu CM to discuss Cauvery Management Board
Kamal seeks appointment with Tamil Nadu CM to discuss Cauvery Management Board
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With the Supreme Court mandated timeline for the setting up of the Cauvery Management Board ending on Thursday evening, actor-turned-politician Kamal Haasan has sought an appointment with Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami to discuss the issue.

Speaking to reporters in Chennai, on Thursday afternoon, he said, “I wish to present this demand as a people’s representative in front of the Chief Minister. We have asked for an appointment. We believe we will get it.”

The main bone of contention post the February 16 verdict is the interpretation of the words in the judgement that call for the setting up of a scheme. Tamil Nadu’s argument remains that “scheme” refers to the Cauvery Management Board (CMB) as prescribed in the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal, while Karnataka rejects says that there no mention of the CMB and just a “scheme” needs to be put in place.

Speaking on this issue, Kamal said, “They have explained what scheme means. If the Inter-State Water Tribunal Act is read, one can understand what scheme is. Both states need water. The need for an authority is a way to get that. That has to be done. If this is politicised, it is for vote hunting. Setting up the CMB is not a big, difficult task. If they will it, they can do it. If the Centre has a strong intention, this can be done.”

When asked why he was not pressurising the Central government, whose duty it is to implement the SC’s verdict, he said, “I am! The Prime Minister can do it if he wants to do it. I’m not trying to outthink the Prime Minister here. He is our honourable Prime Minister. I can only say what we require. Tamilian farmers and people here require water.”

Appealing to the Centre and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, he also said, “The appeal to the PM is, please sir, you have the authority to create this Cauvery Management Scheme and you must do it, please.”

In an apparent reference to the late Chief Minister Jayalalithaa, he also said, “If the Tamil Nadu government doesn’t insist on the setting up of the Cauvery Management Board then it is an insult to whose name they are running their government in.”

On Wednesday, AIADMK MP Naveenthakrishnan declared in the Rajya Sabha that all the party’s MPs would commit suicide if the CMB was not set up. Reacting to this, Kamal said, “I think it's wrong to commit suicide even if you are heartbroken. To use this for political gaming is conning. We shouldn’t do that. If those who say they will resign, and then go on to resign, then my appreciations to them.”

Even as media reports suggest that the Centre will move the apex court seeking a clarification on its verdict, Kamal refused to call it contempt of court. “You can’t say it is contempt of court because they are asking for doubts,” he said.

However, he did say that he believed that the setting up of the CMB was being delayed on account of the elections in Karnataka.

Kamal Haasan also said he will participate in the ongoing protest against the Sterlite copper plant on April 1, Sunday.

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