Panaji: Union Minister Pralhad Joshi on Monday said the chief ministers of Karnataka and Goa should sit and negotiate to resolve the Mahadayi water dispute issue. Karnataka and Goa have been locked in a bitter battle over sharing of water of the Mahadayi river, which originates at Belagavi in the southern state.
When asked about the dispute, Joshi said the Mahadayi Water Dispute Tribunal has already given its order, but governments of both the states are unhappy and have moved the Supreme Court to challenge it.
“That’s why I said it is better that the chief ministers concerned sit and talk, and try to resolve the issue. I have requested the Karnataka CM and will also requestthe Goa CM to have a negotiated settlement,” he told reporters here.
The Union parliamentary affairs, coal and mines minister was addressing the mediapersons to inform about some of the bold decisions taken by the BJP-led NDA government during its last 100 days in office.
Asked if Karnataka has started construction of a dam on the river, Joshi said there is no question of any state carrying out such work.
“Since the matter is in the tribunal, no government can do anything on that and no government is allowed to violate law of the land, and nobody is doing that…no work is going on as far as my knowledge goes,” the Lok Sabha member from Dharwad in Karnataka said.
In August last year, the tribunal, hearing the dispute among three riparian states of Goa, Karnataka and Maharashtra over sharing of water from the river, allotted 13.42 TMC (including 3.9 TMC for diversion into the depleted Malaprabha river basin) from the Mahadayi river basin to Karnataka, while Maharashtra was allotted 1.33 TMC.
Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant in July this year said his government has already filed a disobedience application against Karnataka before the tribunal for injunction by way of diverting the Mahadayi river water to the Malaprabha basin.
A contempt petition has also been filed before the Supreme Court against Karnataka’s violation, he said.