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Centre dissolves Cauvery water disputes tribunal

New Delhi : The Centre has dissolved the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal. The 28-year-old tribunal has been winded up as all disputes over sharing of the Cauvery river waters among the southern states have reached a "finality".

The tribunal was constituted under the Inter-State River Water Disputes Act, 1956 for adjudication of the water dispute between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. Kerala and Puducherry were also party to the dispute.

"The Central Government is satisfied that no further reference to the said tribunal in the matter would be necessary. Now, therefore, in exercise of the powers conferred by section 12 of the said Act, the Central Government hereby dissolves the said tribunal", said an official notification issued by the Union Water Resources Ministry.

In February 2018, the Supreme Court had hiked Karnataka's share of Cauvery water by 14.75 tmcft and reduced Tamil Nadu's quantum by an equal amount. In its order to resolve the long pending dispute, the apex court had compensated Tamil Nadu by allowing it to extract 10 tmcft ground water from the river basin.

Following the SC verdict, the Centre, in May, presented a draft of the Cauvery Management Scheme for smooth distribution of water among the four southern riparian states, stating that the scheme should be taken to its "logical end".

The intervention was approved by the apex court.

Also acting on the apex court’s order, the Centre had on June 1 constituted the Cauvery Water Management Authority (CWMA). The CWMA was formed by the Centre to implement the water-sharing award of the Cauvery Water Dispute Tribunal.

In its very first meeting in early July, the CWMA had ordered Karnataka to release 31.24 tmc water to Tamil Nadu this month. However, Karnataka is learnt to have decided to appeal in the Supreme Court against the setting up of the Authority.

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