SC refuses to stay permission for Mekedatu dam

Causing a severe setback to Tamil Nadu on Mekedatu dam issue, the Supreme Court today refused to stay the permission given to Karnataka for preparing a Detailed Project Report (DPR) to construct a new dam on Cauvery River and directed the Central Water Commission(CWC) to file its response in four weeks.

Four petitions including the three filed by Tamil Nadu State and one by Puducherry union territory on Mekedatu issue came up for hearing before the apex court. Tamil Nadu government had first filed a petition seeking an interim stay on the permission given to Karnataka.

Later, filed a contempt petition against CWC, Karnataka Water Resources Minister and a couple of officials for giving nod for DPR as well as for obtaining such a permission violating the SC order.  After this, Tamil Nadu also filed another petition questioning the dual role played by Masood Hussain as CWC Chairman as well as Cauvery Water Management Authority and sought directions to CWC to appoint a full-time chairman for CWMA.

Meanwhile, Puducherry union territory government also filed a petition seeking directions to CWC to withdraw the nod given for Karnataka. All these petitions were taken up for hearing today. During the arguments, SC judges asked Tamil Nadu counsel why the State had filed an interim petition as already the Cauvery water dispute had come to a finality. Tamil Nadu counsel said since it was an issue connected with the Cauvery issue, an interim petition was filed.

The Apex court observed that Tamil Nadu would not be affected immediately due to the permission was given to the DPR and as such, the stay cannot be granted on the permission given. Meanwhile, AIADMK MPs stalled the proceedings of both Houses of Parliament over Mekedatu issue. They raised slogans against the permission given to Karnataka for preparing DPR on building a dam at Mekedatu.

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