The AIADMK-led Tamil Nadu state government has asked its counterparts in Karnataka to not proceed with the construction activities of the proposed Mekedatu project on the Cauvery river.
In a letter to Karnataka Water Resources Minister DK Shivakumar, Tamil Nadu Law Minister CV Shanmugam said that no action should be taken on the proposed project as it will be in violation of the Supreme Court's order on the issue.
"I request you not to proceed in any manner with the preparation of a Detailed Project Report for Mekedatu Project of Karnataka and not to take up any construction activities in any place in the Cauvery Basin of Karnataka, without the prior consent of the Government of Tamil Nadu. Any construction or even preparation of a Detailed Project Report for construction of any new reservoir/project is a clear violation of the judgment of the Honâ€™ble Supreme Court dated 16.2.2018. Hence, I request you to desist from preparation of a Detailed Project Report for Mekedatu project," reads the letter.
The letter comes after the Centre gave a preliminary approval for the proposed Mekedatu Project. Karnataka has been asked to prepare a detailed project report for the project. Karnataka has also been asked to provide Tamil Nadu with the required water from River Cauvery as prescribed by the Supreme Court.
The project is aimed to alleviate the drinking water woes of Bengaluru and Ramanagara districts.
In the letter, Shanmugam also accused the Karnataka government of violating the Supreme Court judgement in obtaining permission to go ahead with the detailed project report without informing Tamil Nadu or Central Water Management Authority (CWMA).
Shivakumar in a letter to the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswami had requested him for a meeting in a bid to find an amicable solution to the long-standing issue.
The Mekedatu Project is a multi-purpose balancing reservoir project over the Mekedatu gorge located around 100 km from Bengaluru in Ramanagara district.
The project has courted controversy ever since it was announced in 2013. Environmentalists have opposed the project as it has been proposed in the elephant corridor in the forest area in Sangama, where the Cauvery and Arkavathy rivers meet.
It has also been opposed by the Tamil Nadu government over fears that the absence of a body to monitor the Cauvery Water Dispute Tribunal's order makes the project unfeasible for Tamil Nadu which is downstream of the reservoir.