New Supreme Court bench to hear Cauvery dispute

Cauvery river (Source: India Water Portal)
Cauvery river (Source: India Water Portal)

Cauvery dispute: New Supreme Court bench constituted

A fresh three-member bench will hear the dispute related to the sharing of Cauvery water between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu on  October 18. Earlier, a high level technical team had visited the Cauvery basin area to assess the ground realities, even as the court asked Karnataka to release 2,000 cusecs of water daily to Tamil Nadu from October 7-18. The court also deferred its order asking the Centre to set up the Cauvery Water Management Board. On being ordered by the SC to stop defying its orders, Karnataka had started releasing water from KRS dam for irrigation purposes

India close to being categorised as water scarce: Uma Bharti 

Citing increasing demand, uncertain availability and overexploitation of rivers, the union water resources minister Uma Bharti remarked that India is close to becoming a ‘water scarce’ country. This was at the World Sustainable Development Summit where India and the European Union (EU) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for Water Partnership to clean Indian rivers with European assistance. 

Brahmaputra water row: Indo-China spar continues

China claims that the construction of a hydro power project on the Brahmaputra tributary in Tibet will not affect the river flow to India, the lower riparian country. However, India will take up with China the issue of its blocking a tributary to facilitate construction of Beijing's most expensive hydropower project. Even as experts favour hydro diplomacy with China, Pakistan claims that China has stopped India's water as a reply to aggression

India cannot revoke Indus Waters Treaty: Pakistan

Pakistan has said India cannot unilaterally revoke the Indus Waters Treaty as it is binding on both states and there is no exit clause in it. Political parties in Pakistan have further warned that any attempts by India to unilaterally revoke the Indus Waters Treaty will be treated as an “act of aggression”.

NGT notice to Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Centre on Mahanadi pollution

On a plea demanding immediate halt on all construction activities on river Mahanadi, the National Green Tribunal sought response from state governments of Odisha and Chhattisgarh, and the Centre. This direction came in response to a petition filed by a social organisation alleging that Mahanadi is dying a slow death due to rampant constructions and unchecked pollution. 

This is a roundup of important policy matters from October 3-9, 2016. Also read last week's news roundup.