After Tamil Nadu, Puducherry To Oppose Karnataka's Mekedatu Dam Project

The issue has become a dispute between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, with the latter insisting its interests would be affected if the project takes shape.

After Tamil Nadu, Puducherry To Oppose Karnataka's Mekedatu Dam Project

Chief Minister N Rangasamy would write to PM Modi and Union Jal Shakti Minister seeking intervention

Puducherry:

After Tamil Nadu, the AINRC-led NDA government in Puducherry has decided to oppose Karnataka's proposed dam on river Cauvery at Mekedatu, with Chief Minister N Rangasamy set to take up the issue with the Centre, official sources said on Wednesday.

Mr Rangasamy would write shortly to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat seeking their intervention in the matter, requesting them not to permit Karnataka to construct the estimated Rs 9,000 crore balancing reservoir.

The issue has become a dispute between Karnataka and neighbouring Tamil Nadu, a lower riparian state, with the latter insisting its interests would be affected if the project takes shape.

Karnataka has said the project will not affect its neighbour, with the ruling BJP insisting it will go ahead with the initiative, which, once completed, could ensure drinking water to Bengaluru and neighboring areas (4.75 TMC) and also generate 400 MW power.

On Wednesday, a meeting was held at the chamber of the chief minister here to discuss the matter and it was decided that a detailed letter be written to PM Modi and Mr Shekhawat, seeking their intervention to ensure the project was not taken up by Karnataka, the sources said.

The sources said the meeting felt that the flow of Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu and consequently to Karaikal, an enclave of this union territory dependent on Cauvery water for agricultural operations, would be hit if the dam was constructed.

"Karaikal is lying at the tail end of the Cauvery basin and depends on the river for farm operations and hence if the dam comes up as planned by Karnataka, farm operations would be hit," sources said quoting the discussions held on Wednesday.

PWD Minister K Lakshminararayan, Transport Minister Chandra Priyanga, AINRC legislator PNR Tirumurugan and Independent member PR Siva (the last three are elected from Karaikal region to the Assembly) and PWD officials also participated in the meeting.