Tamil Nadu's petition, seeking an immediate stay on Centre's permission to Karnataka government for preparing a detailed project report or DPR for a proposed dam across the Cauvery at Mekedatu about 110 km from Bengaluru, has been rejected by the Supreme Court.
"No stay as of now," the top court said today after hearing the petition to put on hold "the operation of approval given by Central Water Commission (CWC) on November 22," as it issued notice to Karnataka and Union Government to file their responses within a month.
The proposed dam has become another flashpoint between the neighbours with a history of long-drawn court cases and street protests over the sharing of Cauvery water.
Tamil Nadu suspects that with the proposed project Karnataka intends to extend the area under irrigation that will deprive its farmers their due share of water from the inter-state river. Karnataka maintains that the reservoir is only for storing water meant to generate electricity and provide drinking water to Bengaluru as well as its neighbouring areas.
Last Thursday, a special session of the state Assembly passed a resolution moved by Chief Minister K Palaniswami urging the Union Government to direct Karnataka government "not to take up any construction works by it or through its agencies at Mekedatu or at any other place in the Cauvery basin of Karnataka State without the consent of Tamil Nadu," last Thursday.