The Tamil Nadu-Karnataka bickering over Hogenakkal is back.
Karnataka, with a new government in place, now says the Hogenakkal drinking water project does not fall under the purview of the decision of the Cauvery Water Tribunal.
Mohan Katarki, senior advocate who defends the state in the case, told rediff.com from New Delhi, "As per the reading of Karnataka, the Hogenakkal project is an entirely different issue and was not covered under the award of the Cauvery Waters Tribunal.
Karnataka, which is likely to challenge Tamil Nadu's decision to go ahead with the project in the Supreme Court, feels that the matter cannot be linked to the Cauvery dispute. He says, in the present case, there is a territorial issue, too.
But Tamil Nadu thinks otherwise, claiming that the water which will be used for the project has already been allocated to it by the tribunal. It says just 1.38 thousand million cubic metre of water will be used annually and eventually the project will be a source of drinking water for 30 lakh people in the villages of Krishnagiri and Dharmapuri. The water, anyway, is not being utilized by Karnataka, Tamil Nadu claims.
Karnataka seeks a joint survey of Hogenakkal as the issues relating to the boundaries have to be resolved. Karnataka accuses Tamil Nadu of not agreeing for a joint survey of the area to put an end to this dispute.
It is learnt that Tamil Nadu, however, is not ready to even lose an inch of land in Hogenakkal.
Karnataka is yet to decide on the next course of action. Certain legal issues pertaining to this case are being discussed by experts. However, it is learnt that Karnataka may go before the Supreme Court on the grounds that there is a territorial issue also at stake.
Katarki says that the project report prepared by Tamil Nadu is being studied and the technical angles into this case too are being looked into.
He says that Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa is being apprised of all these details and a decision should be taken soon.