CHENNAI: AIADMK coordinator and former chief minister O Panneerselvam on Thursday condemned the Karnataka government's claim that Tamil Nadu does not have the rights to speak about the Mekedatu Dam project.
"Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka, and Puducherry have equal rights with regard to Cauvery water sharing, which was also confirmed by the Supreme Court," the AIADMK leader said.
Stating that the water-releasing State does not have the right to construct the dam on its own without consulting with its water-sharing states, Panneerselvam said "At this juncture, Tamil Nadu has all the rights to oppose the construction of a dam across the Cauvery river".
Stating that Karnataka Chief Minister's comments that Tamil Nadu has no rights to talk about the Mekedatu Dam project were completely against the Supreme court's order, the AIADMK coordinator said "At the same time, it cannot be accepted that the Karnataka's water resources minister's assertion that Mekedatu dam would be constructed to fulfill the drinking water issues of Bengaluru people".
Pointing out that as per the original order of Cauvery Water Dispute Tribunal, Karnataka has to release 192 TMC Cauvery water to Tami Nadu, "However, when Karnataka moved the Apex court, which ordered that State to release 177.25 TMC water and at this point of time, constructing Mekedatu dam is totally unfair".
Referring to the proposed meeting, Panneerselvam said with already the Mekedatu dam issue is with the Supreme court, Cauvery Water Management Authority should not discuss the dam issue since it has the authority only to monitor the water sharing activities. "It is totally against its jurisdiction if it takes up Mekedatu row in its meeting to be held on June 23," he added.
"The Chief Minister should take steps for preventing the Cauvery Water Management Authority to discuss about the construction of the Mekedatu dam," he added.