Tamil Nadu Water Resources Minister Duraimurugan said on Friday that the Supreme Court’s decision on the Cauvery dispute was final. The minister added he was hopeful that Karnataka would increase its release to Tamil Nadu in the coming days. Meanwhile, in Bengaluru, over 200 persons have been taken into custody for conducting protests despite prohibitory orders by Bengaluru police.
Duraimurugan said, “As on date, Tamil Nadu is receiving 7,000 cusecs of water from Karnataka. Initially, only 2,500-3,000 cusecs of water were discharged to the State from Karnataka; it is gradually increasing. As per the Cauvery Management Authority, Supreme Court orders the State still needs to receive 11,000 cusecs of water.” Duraimurugan said he was hopeful that the remaining discharge would reach the state by tomorrow.
According to the water resources department, at 8am, the water level at Mettur dam – the major reservoir across the Cauvery River in Tamil Nadu was 37.91ft against a total scale of 120ft. The dam has a stored capacity of 11,037mcft of water and it was receiving an inflow of 6,943 cusecs water. At 8am, 6,500 cusecs water was being discharged to the river from the dam.
Duraimurugan said as per the Supreme Court’s order, from September 13, for 15 days, 5,000 cusecs of water should be released to Tamil Nadu. “Though there are protests, Karnataka has been discharging water to the state,” Duraimurugan said.
In Bengaluru, the 'Karnataka Jala Samrakshana Samiti', an umbrella outfit of farmers' associations and other organisations led by farmer leader Kuruburu Shanthakumar has given a bandh call opposing the discharge of water to Tamil Nadu. Many of the opposition parties, including the BJP, have extended their support to the shutdown.
The opposition BJP has announced that it would extend cooperation in ensuring that the Bengaluru bandh called by various organisations protesting against the release of Cauvery water is successful.
Party leader B.S. Yediyurappa accused Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and Deputy CM D.K. Shivakumar of behaving like agents of Tamil Nadu for complying with orders of the Cauvery Water Management Authority and the Cauvery Water Water Regulation Committee, which the Supreme Court refused to interfere with.
Bengaluru police have imposed a curfew in the city from Monday night to Tuesday night in the wake of the bandh. Over 10,000 policemen have been deputed in the city to prevent any untoward incident. According to reports, a farmer attempted to kill self by hanging from a tree at Bengaluru Freedom Park. However, he was rescued and was rushed to hospital for treatment.
Bengaluru police have taken into custody over 200 protesters for violating prohibitory orders. The protesters were trying to march towards Raj Bhavan from Vidhana Soudha. Chairman of the federation of pro-Kannada organisations, Vatal Nagaraj, his deputy Praveen Shetty led the march.