Karnataka finally fell in line after being rebuked by the Supreme Court for non-sharing of Cauvery water with Tamil Nadu and today said it was ready to release water.
A satisfied bench of Justice Dipak Misra and Justice U U Lalit then asked Karnataka to release 2000 cusecs of Cauvery water from October 7 to October 18.
The bench put on hold setting up of the Cauvery Management Board to weigh the arguments made by the Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi that the court had no jurisdiction to order constitution of such a board and it was the prerogative of the parliament.
“The constitution of the Cauvery Water Management Board requires the consent of both houses of Parliament and that it cannot be formed on the orders of the apex court”, Rohatgi had informed the bench.
Karnataka has been earlier ordered by the Supreme Court to stop defying its orders and confirm, by tomorrow, if it has released water from the River Cauvery to neighbour Tamil Nadu.
Meanwhile the supreme court formed a technical team led by Central Water Commission Chairman G S Jha to inspect the Cauvery basin and submit a report by October 17, when the court would hear the matter next.
The fresh round of confrontation had begun when the Karnataka government on Saturday filed a fresh review petition in the Supreme Court against its three recent orders on Cauvery water release to Tamil Nadu and direction for constitution of Cauvery Water Management Board by Centre.
“Undue hardship will be caused to us and there will be grave miscarriage of justice”, said the petition.
In its review petition, it said grave miscarriage of justice has been caused to it pursuant to three orders of the apex court dated September 20, 27 and September 30, by which it directed the state to release 6000 cusecs of water till October 6 and constitution of board by Centre till October 4.
Expressing serious concern at the continuing stalemate between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu on the Cauvery water sharing issue, the Supreme Court had on Friday asked the Centre to constitute a Cauvery Water Management Board within three days.
The panel’s mandate is to check the ground reality after a visit to the site and report back to the apex court on October six when the bench will hear the matter next. But the centre came back to the court a day later and expressed its inability to do so on the orders of the court saying only parliament could set up such a body.
The bench of justices Dipak Misra and U U Lalit had asked Karnataka to release Cauvery water from October 1 to six.
The bench had warned Karnataka that it was the last chance before the “wrath of law falls on the State”.
Read the order here.
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