The farmers’ association slammed Yeddyurappa, saying they believed the BJP, which did nothing earlier, was now jumping in on the issue as a poll gimmick

Siddaramaiah writes to Parrikar on Mahadayi water sharing farmers call for bandh
news Politics Saturday, December 23, 2017 - 11:33

With Manohar Parrikar, Chief Minister of Goa, expressing his willingness to hold talks about the Mahadayi River row, Chief Minister of Karnataka Siddaramaiah has now written to both Parrikar and Maharastra CM Devendra Fadnavis about this.

Meanwhile, the agitating farmers association have called for a bandh in four districts in Karnataka on December 27.

Parrikar, of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) had written to the Karnataka BJP chief, BS Yeddyurappa, on Friday, saying that he was willing to hold talks with the neighbouring state on the water sharing dispute.

In his letter, Siddaramaiah seeks a date for the meeting, while also reiterating that Parrikar had not responded to his previous letter asking for a meeting.

“The media in Karnataka has been reporting a personal letter addressed by you to Mr BS Yeddyurappa. I have also seen the letter. I only wish you had replied to my letter (in June this year), since I took the initiative for the negotiated settlement; not only on my own but also on the suggestion made by the Hon’ble Judges of the Mahadayi Water Disputes Tribunal,” Siddaramaiah’s letter states.

He also requested Parrikar to meet on any “convenient date or time, at the earliest, at any given venue” to negotiate a settlement.

Water Resource Minister, MB Patil, said that he was not happy with the way Parrikar has handled the Mahadayi issue.

“Manohar Parrikar’s letter to Yeddyurappa is a political game and completely against protocol. CM Siddaramaiah has written several letters to the Goa CM seeking an amicable settlement. Instead of responding to him, he wrote to the BJP State President. Parrikar should have, in an official capacity, written to at least the Chief Secretary if not to the CM,” he said.

Notwithstanding these political manoeuvres, the Mahadayi Kalasa-Banduri Horata Samanvaya Samiti has called for a bandh in four districts of the Malaprabha area on December 27, asking for immediate intervention of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to resolve the dispute.

“When Yeddyurappa had said that he would help resolve the issue, we had believed him and had great expectations, but the issue was sidelined. One letter from the Goa CM to Yeddyurappa does not mean that the issue has been resolved. The BJP did not respond to our concerns for so many years and suddenly they are jumping in on it. They are playing a political game to win votes,” the Samiti’s convenor, Rajanna Koravi, told the media on Friday.

Rajanna added that the bandh will be effective in Dharwad, Gadag, Bagalkot and Belagavi districts, and that the farmers want to “send a message to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to hold a meeting of the concerned state governments resolve the issue”.

Meanwhile, Siddaramaiah too accused the BJP of lying to the people by making tall claims that they had resolved the issue. “This is just an attempt to fool the public. Who is Yeddyurappa and what authority does he have? The only person who can resolve the issue is the Prime Minister,” he said.

The Goa government had earlier opposed an out-of-court settlement and had not responded positively to Karnataka’s proposed meeting of Chief Ministers.

The reluctant Goa government agreed to consider an amicable settlement after the BJP National President Amit Shah held a meeting on December 21 keeping in mind the upcoming assembly polls in the state, where the Mahadayi water sharing dispute could potentially swing votes in North Karnataka.


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