The Cauvery Water crisis should have been considered resolved on 5 February, 2007, when the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal delivered its award. Water will be the cause of battles and bitterness in future. Unintended consequences of interconnecting all rivers in the country have not been properly studied. Canalization of river waters and passing them over to neighbouring states is creating more problems. Kerala’s argument for constructing a check dam in the Attapadi region is that there are no major or medium retaining structures in the command area of the project. It is rather unfortunate that even after centuries of so called civilization, we continue to depend upon rains for our water needs, and have made only puerile efforts to provide water in the quantity needed. Water crisis affect all southern Indian states Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka. Goa and Maharashtra too have water disputes. Most of the irrigation facilities are privately owned lift irrigation systems, which are confined to small patches. We cannot just weigh electoral advantages and act unfairly. Our policy makers should think twice before taking such decisions. There should be team of experts consisting of agriculture experts, engineers, farmers, meteorologists from both sides to evolve a workable solution. The need of the hour is for a face-to-face meeting between the Chief Ministers to defuse the crisis. Water being compulsory need for everyone the issue should be resolved through dialogue between stakeholders.
Vinod C. Dixit
(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)