The Goa government on Wednesday filed a 306-page contempt petition against Karnataka before the Supreme Court on account of gross acts of wilful disobedience of the undertakings and statements made by the neighbouring state on an affidavit before the apex court and the Mahadayi Water Disputes Tribunal (MWDT).
Karnataka had in its affidavit filed on September 27, 2006, stated before the apex court that it would not utilise or divert the Mhadei or Mahadayi waters under the Kalasa-Bhanduri project.
Further, when the Mahadayi Water Disputes Tribunal was constituted, Goa had filed an Interlocutory Application for direction that Karnataka be restrained from diverting or utilising the Mhadei waters. Karnataka made solemn statements and gave its undertaking to the Tribunal that it would not divert the Mhadei waters until the final adjudication of the dispute by the Tribunal.
The arguments of the parties to the dispute before the Tribunal had concluded
on February 21, 2018, and the decision of the Tribunal is awaited. However, somewhere on July 23, 2018, it came to light that Karnataka had in violation of the orders of the apex court as well as the Tribunal blocked the flow of Mhadei river water into the state of Goa and diverted it to the Malaprabha basin in Karnataka.
Taking this contemptuous conduct of Karnataka very seriously, the Goa Government has filed a 306-page contempt petition before the Supreme Court.
Meanwhile, sources in the government said that Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar and Water Resource Minister Vinod Palyekar have already written letters to the Karnataka government objecting to and condemning the illegal diversion of water from the Mhadei basin.
It may be noted that the hearing on the water dispute between Goa and Karnataka before the Mahadayi Water Disputes Tribunal is in the final stage and Goa has presented its case before the Tribunal strongly.
Since the tenure of the Mahadayi Water Disputes Tribunal will be ending on August 20, 2018, it is expected that it will pronounce its verdict before that.
The dispute over the sharing of water of Mhadei river between the states of Goa, Maharashtra and Karnataka is over 30 years old.