Cauvery talks fail as Karnataka sticks to its stand
Talks between Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa and her Karnataka counterpart Jagadish Shettar on the Cauvery water sharing row failed on Thursday with the two sides failing to arrive at an agreement.
Jayalalithaa, who arrived here with a 10-member delegation to hold talks with her counterpart, had earlier on Wednesday chaired a meeting of ministers, chief secretary and senior advocates chalking out the strategy for today's meeting.
Jayalalithaa, however, looked disappointed after the meeting, and said the 'Karnataka Government has refused to release any more water'.
"We had requested Karnataka to release at least 32 TMC feet water. Karnataka Government has flatly refused to release any more water. We will inform Supreme Court about today's meeting with Karnataka Chief Minister," she told mediapersons here.
Shettar said after the meeting that Karnataka couldn't meet the demands of Tamil Nadu.
"Karnataka needs water for its farmers', cannot give it away to Tamil Nadu. Karnataka has to consider its requirements before sharing it with Tamil Nadu," he added.
This was for the second time in 15 years that chief ministers of the two states met to have bilateral talks on the water row. Former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi and former Karnataka Chief Minister J.H. Patel had met earlier in 1997 in Chennai to discuss the issue.
The meeting between the Jayalalithaa and Shettar took place after the Supreme Court's suggestion to both the chief ministers to meet and arrive at an amicable solution to the 'sensitive' water dispute.
"Why the two Chief Ministers can't sit together? Give it a try, it is not impossible. We want you to meet in a congenial manner and discuss the issue in the larger interest of farmers from both states," said an apex court bench of Justices D.K. Jain and Madan B Lokur earlier on Monday
The apex court said that it is not possible for the Cauvery River Authority headed by the Prime Minister to meet, so the state governments should meet to find a solution.
The court's suggestion came in the course of the hearing of Tamil Nadu's petition seeking direction to Karnataka to release 9,000 cusecs of water every day for 15 days as directed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who presided over the meeting of the Cauvery River Authority on September 19.
The Cauvery River Authority comprises all the basin states - Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Kerala, besides the union territory of Puducherry.