Goa, on August 20, will file a disobedience petition against Karnataka before the Mahadayi Water Disputes Tribunal, for violating the injunction given by the Tribunal.
The state government has also decided to urgently press with the central government for early constitution of the Mahadayi Water Management Authority, a control board, so that all the future Mhadei water diversion plans of Karnataka government are controlled by it.
Confirming this decision, Additional Solicitor General of India Atmaram Nadkarni, who represented Goa at the Mahadayi Water Disputes Tribunal in the case pertaining to sharing of Mhadei water among Goa, Karnataka and Maharashtra, said that such a direction has also come from the Tribunal, in its recent verdict pertaining to the award of Mhadei water to the three states.
“Paragraphs 1350 and 1351 in Volume XII of the Tribunal’s decision are very clear about this aspect,” Nadkarni stated, pointing out that paragraph 1350 says that the central government shall constitute an authority called Mahadayi Water Management Authority to implement the report and final decision of Mahadayi Water Disputes Tribunal.
“Furthermore, paragraph 1351 maintains that the authority shall own and operate the projects for diversion of Mhadei waters, situated/ located in the state of Karnataka and state of Maharashtra,” he added, pointing out, “Which means, whatever quantity of water Karnataka or Maharashtra have been awarded, the projects to harness that water will not be owned and operated by Karnataka or Maharashtra, but will be owned and operated by the Mahadayi Water Management Authority.
It is interesting to note that no other water disputes tribunals, which were set up earlier, had ruled thus.
“In fact, paragraph 1351 has deep implications in Goa’s favour and is a more important victory, than the quantum of water itself,” Nadkarni said.
The Tribunal has very emphatically noted that only Goa has submitted evidence on this issue, while Karnataka and Maharashtra have not, and has passed severe strictures against them, in paragraph 1310 of the verdict.
The particular observation of the Tribunal indicates that the two states are perhaps not interested in the constitution of a management board or an authority for implementation of the report/ final decision rendered on Mhadei water sharing.