Chennai: As the Mekedatu dam row is back in political limelight with Karnataka unrelenting on its avowed stand of dam construction and Tamil Nadu stoutly opposing it, an all party meeting comprising leaders of Legislature Parties to decide the future course of action began on Monday.
Chief Minister M K Stalin chaired the meeting at the State Secretariat in which representatives of 13 legislature parties took part. Mr Stalin said the meeting would discuss and take a decision that will reflect the unanimous view of the people of the Tamil Nadu in protecting the interests of the farmers on the issue.
Stating that the TN government has been taking all legal steps to prevent Karnataka from constructing a new dam at Mekedatu across River Cauvery, he said he had persoanlly explained the State’s stand to Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his recent meeting in New Delhi.
He said Water Resources Minister Duraimurugan too met Union Jal Shakthi Minister and said the Centre should take appropriate steps on the matter and that no permission should be granted to Karnataka without the consent
of Tamil Nadu, which is a lower riparian state.
Mr Stalin also recalled the letter written by his Karnataka counterpart B S Yeddyurappa seeking TN’s cooperation for the project and the response sent to Mr Yeddyurappa by him asking him not to pursue the project in the interest of the farmers.
In his reply, Mr Stalin also categorically told Mr Yeddyurappa that construction of the dam would be in violation of the Surpeme Court order and that Tamil Nadu would never allow construction of the dam as it would severely affect the interest of the farmers.
The convening of the meeting comes in the wake of Mr Yeddyurappa hardening his stand and declaring that Karnataka would go ahead with the construction of the new dam at Mekedatu and that no one could stop it.
Mr Yeddyurappa’s unilateral remarks, despite the Union Jal Shakthi Minister assuring Mr Duraimurugan that no nod would be given to Karnataka without TN’s consent, has triggered strong condemnation from various parties in TN, including the Principal Opposition AIADMK and its ally, the PMK.
With the ruling DMK too not inclined to budge an inch on the matter and continue to stoutly oppose the project, all the political parties in Tamil Nadu were united in their stand on the issue.