By: M.S.Yatnatti: Editor and Video Journalist Bengaluru: Karnataka Cauvery is about 270 KM (32,000 km2 ) and Tamilnadu Cauvery is about 570 KM (44,000 km2 ) and both can be taken as independent rivers and not asInterstate River making tribunal order infructus .Restoration, rejuvenation and renovation of existing water bodies needs to be given high priority in water scarce areas. Inventory of water bodies in villages and nearby areas needs to be prepared and geo-mapped. These water bodies when utilised for water storage would facilitate recharging for meeting the demand for drinking and irrigation purposes and act as natural sinks for excess water during rainy season. At the same time there is an urgent need torejuvenated and revive Kaveri river with water flow by raising water table and aquifersas Dr Rajendra Singh did in Rajasthan if more water no conflict to any state. The 2015 Stockholm Water Prize Laureate has been awarded to India's Rajendra Singh for his innovative water restoration efforts and consistent attempts to improve the country's water security in villages. Better known as the Water Man of India, Singh, who is based in Rajasthan, has dedicated himself to defeating drought and empowering communities in that arid state. He has been working in close cooperation with local residents, and has revived several rivers, bringing hope to a thousand villages and countless people. Starting from a single village in 1985, over the years TBS helped build over 8,600 johads and other water conservation structures to collect rainwater for the dry seasons, has brought water back to over 1,000 villages and revived five rivers in Rajasthan, Arvari, Ruparel, Sarsa, Bhagani and Jahajwali. Revive Kaveri river which runs several kilometers in Karnataka and which also runs several kilometers in Tamil Nadu before joining bay of Bengal.Save the Kaveri river running in both states .Reportedly Water is a critical resource which will determine India's ability to achieve rapid economic growth, improve the quality of life of its people and ensure environmental sustainability . India accounts for about 17% of the world's population but has only 4% of the world's fresh water resources.At 1,544 cubic metre per capita annual availability , India is already a water stressed country and rapidly moving towards becoming water scarce. What is the way forward for India to manage its water resources better? Ground water today accounts for a whopping 62.4% of net irrigation needs, 85% of rural drinking water needs and 50% of urban water needs. This over dependence on ground water has resulted in a radical decline of the ground water table. The Central Ground Water Board has categorised 62.2% of the total assessment units 6,600 blocks, mandals and taluks as over exploited. In states like Punjab, Delhi, Rajasthan, non-existent regulations have led to irresponsible over exploitation and the present rate of withdrawal will lead to complete exhaustion of ground water within a decade.The Interstate River Water Disputes Act of 1956 is legislated to resolve the disputes between the states over sharing of river water and it is not about sharing stored water in dams and barrages of respective states. So question of demanding stored water does not arise under the law .State Government can find a permanent legal solution for Cauvery Water Dispute. As States have power to utilize their allocated "river water” and not the stored water in dams of each states as per Interstate River Water Disputes Act of 1956 so question of demanding stored water from the downstream state cannot arise specially when down steam has more catchment area then upstream state and has more river /rain water predicted is allocated by tribunal which it can store in its dams and storages without allowing it to go waste in sea.
Several Facts need to be brought before courts to get justice and equity to solve sharing of river water problem by the advocates of respective states.. Experts need to debate problem and find the solutions. the Interstate River Water Disputes Act of 1956 to resolve the disputes between the states over sharing of river water and it is not about sharing stored water in dams and barrages of respective states. According to reports and few experts "If you read the Gazetted tribunal order it has allocated rain water predicted to flow in river and it has not has allocated the stored water in respective state dams and barrages and no state can demand stored water.. If rain comes respective states can store their allocated water otherwise they cannot store and no states can demand stored water as their rights. ".The first important aspect is The 802 kilometers (498 mi) Kaveri river has 44,000 km2 basin area in Tamil Nadu and 32,000 km2 basin area in Karnataka. The River Cauvery originates at Talakaveri in Coorg District of Karnataka in Brahmagiri Range of hills in the Western ghats at an elevation of 1341 m. (above MSL) and drains a total area of 81,155 Sq.Kms. of which 34,273 Sq.Kms lies in Karnataka, 43856 Sq.Kms. in Tamilnadu , 2866 Sq.Kms. in Kerala and 160 Sq.Kms in Union Territory of Pondicherry. According to their basin area tribunal allotted Tamil Naduu of Rain or river water predicted has allocated 419 TMC of water annually to Tamil Nadu and 270 TMC to Karnataka; 30 TMC of Kaveri river water to Kerala and 7 TMC to Puducherry. Tribunal has predicted rain water annually which need to be stored by respective states by constructing dams and storage barrages .Accordingly both stateshave constructed dams and storages according their allocations.If rain does not come no state can blame each other. And fight for stored water is illegal ..
Krishna Water Disputes Tribunal (KWDT) is a tribunal set up by the government of India in 1969 under the Interstate River Water Disputes Act of 1956 to resolve the disputes between the states of Karnataka, Maharashtra, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh over sharing of Krishna river water. The KWDT I was headed by R. S Bachawat, a former judge of the Supreme Court. Scheme A pertained to the division of the available waters based on 75% dependability, while Scheme B recommended ways to share the surplus waters. The KWDT in its award outlined the exact share of each state. The award contended based on 75% dependability that the total quantum of water available for distribution was 2060TMC. This was divided between the three states560 TMC Maharashtra 700TMC Karnataka 800 AndhrapradeshTMS . Further, the Tribunal has allowed the States to utilize their allocated share of water for any project as per their plans. This means all states have right to use their allocated share of water for any project and store that water by constructing storage dams as per allocation according to their catchment area upstream and every state have their catchment area upstream for the length of river passing respective states .The water allocated restricts the storage of dam .Now the question is the states have power to utilize their allocated river water and not the stored water in respective dams constructed by each states.
In the similar way after Decades of negotiations between the parties bore no fruit. The Government of India then constituted a tribunal in 1990 to look into the matter. After hearing arguments of all the parties involved for the next 16 years, the tribunal delivered its final verdict on 5 February 2007. In its verdict, the tribunal allocated 419 TMC of water annually to Tamil Nadu and 270 TMC to Karnataka; 30 TMC of Kaveri river water to Kerala and 7 TMC to Puducherry. Karnataka and Tamil Nadu being the major shareholders, Karnataka was ordered to release 192 TMC of water to Tamil Nadu in a normal year from June to May and normal year is defined if river water is 720 TMC and this allocation of water is in river water and not stored water as tribunals are setup for allocation of river water. Further, the Tribunal has allowed the States to utilize their allocated share of water for any project as per their plans. This means all states have right to use their allocated share of water for any project and store that water by constructing storage dams as per allocation according to their catchment area upstream and every state have their catchment area upstream for the length of river passing respective states .The water allocated restricts the storage of dam .Now the question is the states have power to utilize their allocated river water and not the stored water in respective dams constructed by each states. Question of asking the down steam states as a right in stored water of upstream states is out of question .States have been allocated river water and not stored water .