Tamil Nadu Bandh on Cauvery Row: What is this dispute over Cauvery water?

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Cauvery row
Cauvery row

The Bandh called by opposition parties with support from farmers, traders, students, lawyers, film associations  over the Centre’s failure to constitute a Cauvery Management Board. They are protesting against the government’s inaction on the Cauvery water dispute. There is heavy police personnel deployed to ensure safety and maintain law and order in maintained. What is this dispute over Cauvery water?

 A dispute since British Raj

Cauvery row
Cauvery row

The background of this dispute between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu is about 125 years old. A treaty was done between the Madras Presidency and the Princely State of Mysore in the year 1892 and 1924. The 1924 agreement gave Madras Presidency and the Mysore state the right to use surplus water from river Cauvery.

After Independence

Cauvery row
Cauvery row

The agreement between Madras Presidency- Mysore State ended in 1974. At the same time the controversy started.

The Supreme Court intervened in the matter and in May 1990 asked to constitute the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal. A few days after the verdict, the Centre constituted the CWDT.

The CWDT has given its verdict in this case after 16 years in 2007.The tribunal conferred two agreements between 1892 and 1924 between Madras Presidency and Mysore Principals valid.

Karnataka did not like tribunal’s decision and there was huge protest.

The point is that in this case, there is total interference of 3 states and 1 Union Territory.

When The Matter Reached Supreme Court

Cauvery row
Cauvery row

These water disputes have become a cause of violent disputes, sometimes even in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, reports of hate violence have been witnessed. The migration of thousands of people was also due to this dispute. In such a case, the matter reached the Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court ordered the Karnataka government to give 15,000 cusecs of water to Tamil Nadu on September 5, 2016. The court’s verdict led to violence in Karnataka. There were incidents like subversion and arson in many areas of the state. There was an estimated economic loss of about 25 thousand crores in this violence.

States like Tamilnadu, Karnataka have a main problem that farmers need more water for irrigation during poor monsoon. Karnataka says that he does not have enough water in the Cauvery river basin to give a share to Tamil Nadu. Karnataka believes that it should get more water because originally, the Cauvery River had its source at  Kodagu District in Karnataka.

DMK launched #TamilNaduBandh 5 April on the Cauvery water dispute

Cauvery row
Cauvery row

DMK leader MK Stalin, while announcing the closure, has appealed to the ruling party AIADMK to support the shutdown. Stalin said that if Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Union Minister come here he would show them black flags.

Note- few images here are used for representational purpose only.

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