Mandya: Farmers and residents of Mandya, who have been grappling with insufficient rainfall, have strongly opposed the recommendation of the Cauvery Water Regulation Committee (CWRC). The CWRC has suggested that Karnataka release 5,000 cubic feet of water daily to Tamil Nadu for the next 15 days.
Protests erupted in Mandya and Ramanagara immediately after the CWRC’s decision was announced. Farmers voiced their discontent by rallying against Chief Minister Siddharamaiah and Deputy Chief Minister D.K. Shivakumar for their perceived inaction on the matter, even threatening hunger strikes.
This morning, various pro-Kannada organisations staged protests near the Toll Plaza at Kanaminike on the Mysuru-Bengaluru Expressway. Meanwhile, Sarvodaya Party leader and MLA Darshan Puttannaiah expressed his surprise at the CWRC’s decision.
He said, “We did not anticipate such a decision. If they proceed with releasing water, we will need to escalate our protests across the Cauvery belt. Although the Government has stated it won’t release water, if they do, we are prepared to take action.”
Puttannaiah criticised the CWRC for not calculating the required water release properly. He accused the CWRC of showing bias in favour of Tamil Nadu.
HDK flays Government
Former CM H.D. Kumaraswamy (HDK) vehemently opposed the release of any water to Tamil Nadu under any circumstances, emphasising Karnataka’s stance on the matter. He questioned why the CWRC directive disproportionately affects Karnataka when Tamil Nadu does not seem to be facing any significant water issues.
Kumaraswamy criticised the Congress Government for not taking the issue seriously. He highlighted that committee meetings often involve online participation by officials, leading to disputes and a disconnect from ground realities. He argued that Karnataka was not effectively represented, resulting in the Government failing to protect the interests of farmers.
Expressing frustration, Kumaraswamy accused the Government of succumbing to external pressures. He flayed the CM and his deputy for their ineffective management of the Cauvery water issue, which has caused hardship for the State’s farmers.
Kumaraswamy also pointed out that Karnataka should have filed objections when Tamil Nadu initially demanded water, but the Government remained silent, and lawyers did not take action.