Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami on Sunday said Cauvery delta has been declared a ''protected agricultural zone'' and asserted that hydrocarbon exploration projects will not be allowed in the basin.
Last year, the Centre had awarded oil and gas exploration contracts in the Cauvery basin. Tamil Nadu has witnessed protests over the projects amid the ongoing water crisis in the state.
"We declare Cauvery delta as a protected agricultural zone. We will talk to legal experts to bring a special law. Even though I am the CM, I am looking at this problem as a farmer. We will not allow the hydrocarbon project," Mr Palaniswami said.
The protected agricultural Zone tag would require state government permission to undertake projects.