State should press Centre for Mekedatu project approval
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State should press Centre for Mekedatu project approval

January 18, 2022

Interaction on ‘Mekedatu Balancing Reservoir construction: How far is it beneficial to Mysuru region’

Mysore/Mysuru: Maintaining that the Mekedatu project is beneficial to both Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, M. Lakshmana, Chairman of Karnataka State Centre of The Institution of Engineers, said that the there is no point in Tamil Nadu’s objection to the project and the Union Government should give all necessary clearances without wasting any further.

He was speaking at an Interaction programme on ‘Mekedatu Balancing Reservoir construction-How far is it beneficial to Mysuru region,’ organised by The Institution of Engineers, Karnataka State Centre, at Ideal Jawa Rotary School on JLB Road here this morning.

Lakshmana presented a power-point presentation featuring details of the project and how it benefits Mysuru region and Tamil Nadu and other riparian States as well.

Maintaining that the Supreme Court in its order on Feb.16, 2018, clearly said that all the  four riparian States can share 740 TMC of water and that every State has the right to store water that flows in their respective State, Lakshmana said that according to the water sharing formula, Tamil Nadu would get 404.25 TMC, Karnataka-284. 75 TMC, Kerala-30 TMC and Pondicherry-7 TMC.

Pointing out that the Mekedatu Reservoir across Cauvery River which is planned to build at a distance of 5 km away from the point where Hanur and Kanakapura taluks meet, Lakshmana said that the project, which was first conceived when S. Nijalingappa was the Chief Minister, has been lingering for decades since then.

Contending that  the Siddharamaiah-led Congress Government first submitted the DPR (Detailed Project Report) to the Centre in 2017, when the project was estimated to cost Rs. 5,192 crore, he said that the Mekedatu Reservoir would be biggest one in terms of Cauvery water storage as it can store 67.14 TMC of water, which can cater to the drinking water needs of Bengaluru city and a few other districts of Old Mysuru region. The Centre then upon receiving the DPR, had returned it back seeking certain clarifications. Subsequently, the JD(S)-Congress coalition Government submitted a revised DPR of Rs. 9,000 crore on Jan.18, 2019 and since then, the Centre has remained silent on granting approval for the project. Claiming that the Centre had withheld the sanction due to the pressure of the previous AIADMK Government in Tamil Nadu, Lakshmana said that the Centre should ensure that the CWC (Central Water Commission) gives all clearance for the execution of this ambitious  drinking water project of Karnataka.

READ ALSO  Proposed Mekedatu project slammed by TN parties

Rolling out the technical specifications and other statistics related to the project, Lakshmana argued that the State Government nor the Centre need not wait for Tamil Nadu’s permission for the execution of the project.

Highlighting the huge benefits of Mekedatu Reservoir for Karnataka, Lakshmana said that the reservoir can alone hold 67.14 TMC of water, while the collective storage capacity of the rest of the four dams of Cauvery River — KRS, Hemavathi, Harangi and Kabini — is 115 TMC, with KRS accounting for 49 TMC. He further said that 400 MW of power can be locally generated from the project, which can be used for industrial needs of the region.

On environmental  impact of the project, Lakshmana said that it has been estimated that a total of 5,086 acres, including 4,716 acres of forest land, 280 acres of Revenue land and 90 acres of private land, would submerge, he said that the Forest Department has been given alternate places in Uttara Kannada and Shivamogga districts for making up the  loss of forest cover. Asserting that the Mekedatu forest is not a dense one and also there is not much wild life left in it, Lakshmana held that the project will have little impact on environment.

Accusing the State Government of doing little for the execution of the project, he said that the State should step up pressure on the Centre, CWC and the Union Environment Ministry for giving all necessary clearances. The Centre should dismiss any objections by Tamil Nadu and go ahead for granting approval to Karnataka for the execution of the project, he added.

READ ALSO  Mekedatu: Tamil Nadu rules out talks with Karnataka

Replying to a question on activist Medha Patkar’s opposition to the project, Lakshmana dismissed Medha’s stand and said that the Congress will take Medha to the project site and explain her about the benefits of the project for Karnataka and Tamil Nadu.

The Institution of Engineers Hon. Secretary  Dr. Enti Ranga Reddy, MCCI President A.S.Satish, farmer leader Hoskote Basavaraj, City Congress President R. Murthy and others were present.

4 COMMENTS ON THIS POST To “State should press Centre for Mekedatu project approval”

  1. Sridhar T Krishna says:

    Who have all trekked the complete forest region to make a total census and survey of animals, fauna and flora to categorically show the effect of the project or is it just a superficial statement? Forest cover substitution doesn’t answer the loss of nature. As someone suggested why not decongest lakes, ponds illegally occupied in & around cities to save god given natural resources

  2. Jalandhara says:

    This Institution of Engineers has been a toothless and worthless organisation, and for long provided venue for speaking engagements, who talked nonsense and did achieve nothing while they were in service, listening to their political masters. This organisation is simply a talking shop.
    Even when Both Tamil Nadu and then then Mysore state had Congress governments, the Centre led by successive Congress PMs, listened to only Tamil Nadu CM.
    When DMK, and later AIADMK formed Tamil Nadu Governments, the Centre led by Congress CMs like Rajiv Gandhi, Narasimha Rao, and Manmohan Singh listened to only Tamil Nadu Government.
    Siddaramiah was a total ineffectual failure as the CM as he worshipped Sonia and Rahul, who favoured Tamil Nadu Government.
    Now that there is a BJP government in Karnataka, and a BJP government at the Centre, one would have seen change. NO, PM Modi, favoured the previous AIADMK government in Tamil Nadu ignoring Yediyurappa, and now PM Modi supports the DMK government led by M K Stalin in Tamil Nadu.
    This says so much about the impotence of Bommai who is a lightweight and toady CM.

  3. Jalandhara says:

    Correction: for long provided venue for speaking engagements for retired engineers and others, who talked nonsense…

  4. It is time that the many issues like the Mekedatu, the Yettinahole, the Mahadayi and in fact dams are thoroughly discussed in connection with the catastrophic consequences they cause together with the world’s dams and separately. Not only this but the highways which divide the left of nature from the right must also be discussed with the issues raised by the dams which separate the river basins into upstream and downstream areas.And the nuclear reactors like the Kudankulam,Kakrapar,Madras Atomic Powerlessness disasters The specialists alone must not decide policy if we the humans are not to be relegated to the fossil records. We must study the infinitely superior nature and harmony with it and not mine it out of existence like the Lakshmanas would like. For a sense of the disastrous route proposed by the specialists and the competing uses for the Mekedatu area and others see
    Ramaswami Ashok Kumar. 2022. PERFECT DESIGNS: Goat’s leap or Mekedatu.Blogspot. Discuss how modern civilization is landing us into dustbowls and pandemics after pandemics because of the dams among other useless contraptions of the wild man.

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