Shettar hopes for SC relief over Cauvery row

Last Updated: Sun, Oct 07, 2012 18:51 hrs
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Hubli: Under attack from farmers and a section of his own Bharatiya Janata Party for releasing Cauvery river water to Tamil Nadu, Karnataka Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar said Sunday he was hoping for a "positive response" from the Supreme Court Monday.

The apex court is to Monday hear Karnataka's plea to modify its Sep 28 order to release 9,000 cusecs of Cauvery river water to Tamil Nadu daily.

Shettar told reporters Sunday in this north Karnataka commercial hub, about 400 km from Bangalore, that he was "hopeful" of getting relief from the apex court.

He said he, Law Minister S. Suresh Kumar and Water Resources Minister Basavaraj Bommai would be in New Delhi late Sunday to brief Karnataka's legal team headed by Fali Nariman.

With little option but to obey the Supreme Court directive, Karnataka started releasing water from Sep 29, which has led to daily protests in Bangalore and in the Cauvery basin districts. The state shut down Saturday in protest.

Farmers' organisations in the Cauvery basin districts of Mandya, Mysore and Chamarajanagar have been demanding Shettar's resignation for releasing the water. Mandya is about 80 km from Bangalore, Mysore is 130 km, and Chamarajanagar is around 200 km.

The issue has come in handy for Shettar's detractors in the ruling BJP to launch an attack on him.

His predecessor, D.V. Sadananda Gowda, Sunday asked Shettar to stop water release even if it means contempt of court and going to jail if there was no relief from the apex court Monday.

The BJP's first chief minister in the state B.S. Yeddyurappa, has been blaming Shettar saying he had failed to present the state's case properly in the Supreme Court and to the central government.

Meanwhile, protest demonstrations continued in Manyda and Mysore for the eighth day Sunday. Traffic between Bangalore and Mysore was also affected for several hours as protesters blocked roads in Mandya.

Karnataka has declared 150 of the state 176 taluks, or revenue sub-divisions, drought-hit as the monsoon failed in the state this year.

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