Cauvery Water Sharing Issue

Context: The Tamil Nadu government sought the Supreme Court’s intervention to make Karnataka immediately release 24,000 cubic feet per second (cusecs) from its reservoirs. About Cauvery Water Dispute:
  • Parties to Dispute: Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka and Puducherry
  • Supreme court ruling on Cauvery water dispute:
    • Allocating more water to Karnataka: Karnataka will supply 177.25 tmc instead of 192 tmc – a reduction of 14.75 tmc, from its Billigundlu site to Mettur dam in Tamil Nadu
    • Directed the formation of the Cauvery Management Board (CMB)
    • Allocation to Kerala and Puducherry was not changed.
Article 262:
  • It deals with the adjudication of disputes relating to waters of inter-state rivers or river valleys, says:
  • Parliament may by law provide for the adjudication of any dispute or complaint with respect to the use, distribution or control of the waters of, or in, any inter-state river or river valley.
Inter-State River Water Disputes Resolution Mechanism:
  • The resolution of water disputes is governed by the Inter-State River Water Disputes Act, 1956.
    • According to its provisions, if a State Government makes a request regarding any water dispute and the Central Government is of opinion that the water dispute cannot be settled by negotiations, then a Water Disputes Tribunal is constituted for the adjudication of the water dispute.
    • For Example:  Mahanadi Water Disputes Tribunal
  • Key Challenges:
    • The dispute is complicated by factors such as changing rainfall patterns, population growth, agricultural demands, and urbanization.
    • Balancing the water needs of multiple states and regions while considering ecological concerns adds to the complexity.
  • Dispute Resolution Mechanism:
    • The Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal (CWDT) was constituted by the Government of India in 1990 to adjudicate the water dispute regarding inter-state river Cauvery and the river valley thereof.
News Source: The Hindu

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