Tamil Nadu CM MK Stalin 'strongly' urges Karnataka CM BS Yediyurappa not to pursue Mekedatu project

Tamil Nadu CM MK Stalin on Sunday wrote to his Karnataka counterpart BS BS Yediyurappa over the Mekedatu reservoir project. In his two-page latter, Stalin urged the Karnataka CM not to pursue the project as it would affect Tamil Nadu's farming community.

Earlier on Saturday, Yediyurappa had written to Stalin to not oppose the Mekedatu project “in the right spirit” and offered to hold a bilateral meeting between both states to address any issues.

“...the implementation of the said project in no way affects the interests of the farming communities of Tamil Nadu,” Yediyurappa stated in his letter to Stalin.

The project, which envisages a balancing reservoir across the Cauvery river at Mekedatu, aims to cater to the drinking water needs of the Bengaluru metropolitan region.

Yediyurappa in his letter had reminded Stalin of various projects planned by Tamil Nadu including two hydropower projects, Sillahalla project and several projects on the main river below Mettur.

In reply Stalin wrote, "On the issue of Mekedatu balancing reservoir, the comparison of the project intended for storing of 67.16 TMC water, with the two hydrow power projects of Tamil Nadu would not be correct. There is no consumption of water in the said two hydro projects", adding, "the available water will be re-circulated by pumping to meet power demand and thus it does not affect availability of water for irrigation or drinking usage in Tamil Nadu".

He also contended that Karnataka’s logic to construct a major reservoir at Mekedatu, which is too far away from Bengaluru, aimed at fulfilling the drinking water needs of the state capital does not “sound valid.”

The Mekedatu project would "impound and divert" the uncontrolled water flow due to Tamil Nadu from Kabini sub- basin, the catchment area below Krishnarajasahara, and also from Simsha, Arkavathy and Suvernavathy sub-basins besides other small streams, Stalin said.

“Many old structures need modernization and improvements to increase the water use efficiency. Unless these works are carried out, it would be impossible for us to meet the water demand at the rate of supply stipulated in the order of the Hon’bl Court. I request you to consider the above facts and the sensitivity of these issues and strongly urge you not to pursue the Mekedatu project,” Stalin wrote in the letter.

"I request you to consider the above facts and the sensitivity of these issues and strongly urge you not to pursue the Mekedatu project", he wrote.

"I wish to convey my good wishes to people of Karnataka & earnestly hope that good co-operation & relationship would prevail between the two States," he added.

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