LawPutra ®

Committed To Your Success

Karnataka yet to have legal team: Magadayi River Dispute

Karnataka yet to have legal team: Magadayi River Dispute

While the Goa government is going all out in its legal battle in Supreme Court to prevent from diverting water from Mahadayi river, it has come to light Karnataka is yet to form its legal team in Delhi to take up the case.

In February, Supreme Court had granted Karnataka Government, an intern relief allowing it to implement the final order of Magadayi Water Dispute Tribunal (MWDT). The bench headed by Justice D.Y. Chandrachud, however, said the final order of the apex court will be issued after hearing the petitions filed by all the three states, which have raised objections to the tribunal’s order.

In it’s order in 2018,

the MWDT had allocated 13.42 thousand million cubic feet (tmcf) if water from Magadayi River to Karnataka. The tribunal was set up to settle the nearly four decade old dispute between the three states.

Karnataka government has removed all members of its legal team on Mahadayi issue in the Supreme Court recently except for senior advocate Mohan Katarki, highly placed sources said. It seems nearly impossible for one man to handle a major case like Mahadayi in the Supreme Court. Considering the seriousness of the issue, the state government should immediately reactivate its legal team in New Delhi. The state had planned for the formation of a new team with legal expertise and experience, which is delayed due to the current situation.

Supreme Court’s positive response to the Goa’s request petition for having in-person hearings in the matter of Magadayi River Dispute. This was done merely a week after Ministry of Environment Forest and Climate Change sought a fresh proposal from the state government for allotment of forest lands at the Goa border for the Mahadayi project (Kalasa-Banduri).

This decision of the Supreme Court has put brakes on Karnataka’s ongoing efforts to get the Mahadayi case in the apex court expedited through virtual hearing. The Apex court as stressed the seriousness of the matter agreed for in person hearing rather than resorting to any online platforms. However, the apex court will also hold a virtual hearing on 14th of the next month to finalise the date for having an in-person hearing into the Mahadayi case.

The Goa government had moved :

the Apex court opposing the diversion of water and recently filed a petition against having an online-hearing into any of the applications pertaining to the Mahadayi petitions.Confirming the claim, Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant told media persons in Panaji that the Mahadayi issue was important for Goa as well as Karnataka and Maharashtra and thus his government preferred a personal hearing. 

Katarki, who is the lone member left in Karnataka’s legal team in this case, also supported Goa’s stance of an in-person hearing and said that it would be impossible to virtually to take up this case given the mammoth size of documents the court and the legal teams would have to refer to and said that the SC’s decision to respond positively to Goa’s request for an in-person hearing was not a setback for Karnataka.