In a setback to Telangana and Andhra Pradesh, the Krishna Water Disputes Tribunal-II on Wednesday ruled that there was no need to re-allocate the river water among all four riparian states.
The much-awaited verdict has come as a relief to Maharashtra and Karnataka, which were opposing re-allocation among all states.
The tribunal said the water should be re-allocated between Telangana and Andhra Pradesh, the two successor states of undivided Andhra Pradesh.
It asked the Telugu states to submit their objections and arguments, if any, within four weeks. The tribunal adjourned the next hearing till December 14.
Telangana Advocate General Ramakrishna Reddy said the tribunal order was not final and was subject to a review by the Supreme Court.
He told reporters that they had sought re-allocation of the river water among four states as per Section 89 of the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014. The tribunal, however, ruled that the dispute was confined to only the Telugu states.
Both Andhra Pradesh and Telangana had sought fresh allocation among all four riparian states.
On the other hand, Maharashtra and Karnakata had argued that Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014 was limited to successor states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana and Maharashtra and Karnataka were not parties to it.
They wanted the tribunal to re-allocate water to Telugu states from the share of undivided Andhra Pradesh.
In 2013, the tribunal had made allocation of water among Maharashtra, Karnataka and undivided Andhra Pradesh.
However, Andhra Pradesh had challenged the award on the ground that injustice was done to it. After the formation of Telangana, the state also impleaded in the case.
Of 811 Thousand Million Cubic feet (TMC ft) allocation of surplus water, the share of Andhra Pradesh is 512 TMC ft and of Telangana is 299 TMC ft.
Telangana, which is building many projects on the river, is seeking another 300 TMC ft while Andhra Pradesh is also pressing for additional allocation.