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The Cauvery river water dispute, primarily between Tamil Nadu

and Karnataka, dates back to the 19th century. A chronology of

the riparian wrangle
The agreement signed between Madras Presidency and the princely State of Mysore
in 1924 lapsed in 1974.

May 1990: Supreme Court directs Centre to constitute Cauvery Water Dispute
Tribunal, a demand made by Tamil Nadu since 1970.

June 2, 1990: Centre notifies Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal (CWDT).

January 1991: The CWDT rejects Tamil Nadu government's plea for interim relief.
TN appeals the rejection in Court.

April 1991: Supreme Court directs the CWDT to entertain TN's petition for interim

June 1991: The CWDT announced an interim award: Karnataka ordered to release
205 tmcft. In a move to nullify the interim awards, Karnataka government passes an
Ordinance. Supreme Court intervenes, strikes down Karnataka's ordinance and
upholds the interim award of the CWDT. Karnataka refuses to oblige.

December 11, 1991: The Interim award is published in the Government of India

July 1993: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa goes on a sudden fast at the
MGR memorial in Chennai demanding the Tamil Nadu's share of water as stipulated
by the interim order.

August 1998: Centre constitutes Cauvery River Authority to ensure the

implementation of the interim award of CWDT.

September 8, 2002: Cauvery River Authority chaired by Prime Minister A.B.

Vajpayee directs Karnataka to release 9,000 cusecs (0.8 tmcft) of Cauvery water to
Tamil Nadu. Tamil Nadu unhappy with the order, says it will move Supreme Court.

The Cauvery tangle

September 18, 2002: Protesting against the release of water to Tamil Nadu,
a Karnataka farmer jumps into the Kabini Reservoir, dies.
September 13, 2002: Congress MP from Tamil Nadu Mani Shankar Aiyar blames
the AIADMK for not raising the issue in Parliament.

September 15, 2002: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa refutes Mani
Shankar Aiyar's charges against her and issues a 9-page statement on the Cauvery

September 25, 2002: Karnataka farmers explain the distress situation to the
visiting Cauvery Monitoring Committee panel.

October 12, 2003: Water experts from the Centre express their helplessness in
coming to the rescue of Tamil Nadu in inter-State river disputes; say their hands are
tied. They are of the view that the Centre has not been pro-active in ensuring
effective functioning of the Cauvery River Authority.

July 17, 2005: Karnataka refuses to implement the distress sharing formula and
rules out Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu.

April 13, 2006: After six-rounds of talks, farmers of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu try
to find a solution to the problem of water-sharing between the riparian States.

Feb. 5, 2007: After 16 years, Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal gives final award.
Tribunal holds as valid the two agreements of 1892 and 1924 executed between the
Governments of Madras and Mysore on the apportionment of water to Tamil Nadu.

Final Order of the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal

Feb. 12, 2007: Karnataka protests tribunal final award. Observes State-wide
bandh on the issue.
Feb. 18, 2007: Bangalore IT professionals protest against the "biased" award of the
Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal.

March 18, 2007: Jayalalithaa undertakes a token fast in Chennai demanding

publication of the final award of the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal in the Official
Gazette of the Centre.

June 30, 2008: Senior counsels of Karnataka on the Cauvery dispute meet top
officials of the State government.

July 28, 2010: Cauvery river rises owing to good rainfall in the catchment areas in
Kodagu district.

Dec 2, 2010: The Stanley reservoir, the lifeline of the Cauvery delta, touches the full
reservoir level (FRL) of 120 feet, bringing cheers to water managers in Tamil Nadu.

A report in The Hindu says that between 1991 and 2011 -- in 20

years, Tamil Nadu realised less water on 13 occasions in June-

May 19, 2012: Jayalalithaa seeks immediate Cauvery River Authority meet

Sept. 19, 2012: After nine years, at the seventh CRA, Manmohan Singh directs
Karnataka to release 9,000 cusecs of Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu at Biligundlu.
Both the CMs -- Jayalalithaa and Jagadish Shettar term it "unacceptable". This is the
first CRA meet since the UPA came to power at the Centre in 2004.

Sept. 28, 2012: Supreme Court slams Karnataka government for not complying
with PM's direction at the CRA.

Feb. 29, 2013: Centre notifies the final award of the Cauvery Water Disputes
Tribunal (CWDT). The Central government was mandated to constitute the Cauvery
Management Board (CMB) simultaneously with the gazette notification of the final
award of the Tribunal dated February 19.

March 10, 2013: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister says that she will strive for formation
of Cauvery Water Board during a felicitation ceremony organised in Thanjavur for
her efforts to get the final award notified in the Union gazette.
March 19, 2013: Tamil Nadu moves Supreme Court to give directions to Water
Ministry for constitution of Cauvery Management Board.

May 1, 2013: The Election Commission directs the Union Water Resources
Ministry to defer constituting the Cauvery Management Board (CMB) and the
Cauvery Water Regulation Committee (CWRC) till May 5 in view ot Karnataka
Assembly polls.

May 10, 2013: Supreme Court directs Centre to set up panel to supervise Cauvery
water release.

May 24, 2013: Centre notified temporary Cauvery Water (Implementation of the
Order of 2007) Scheme, 2013.

May 27, 2013: Cauvery issue will be resolved soon, says Karnataka Law Minister.

May 28, 2013: Tamil Nadu moves Supreme Court, seeks Rs. 2,480-cr
damages from Karnataka for not following orders of the Cauvery Water Disputes

June 1, 2013: Union Water Resources Secretary chairs the first meeting of the
Supervisory Committee which saw Tamil Nadu demanding its share of water for
June as stipulated in the award.

June 2, 2013: Water cannot be released as and when TN demands, says Karnataka
Chief Minister Siddaramaiah.

June 6, 2013: Karnataka says it cannot release 134 tmcft of water to Tamil Nadu
between June and September.

June 12, 2013: Cauvery Supervisory Committee terms the Tamil Nadu's plea for
directions to Karnataka for release of Cauvery waters as per the award of the CWDT
as not feasible.

June 14, 2013: Tamil Nadu decides to file contempt plea against Karnataka for its
stand on the Cauvery Supervisory Committee.

June 15, 2013: Chief Minister Jayalaithaa says the Tamil Nadu government will
approach the Supreme Court for the formation of the Cauvery Management Board
and Cauvery Water Regulatory Authority.
June 26, 2013: Contending that the setting up of a supervisory committee had
become a futile exercise, Tamil Nadu moves SC for constitution of Cauvery
Management Board.

June 28, 2013: Tamil Nadu files contempt petition in the Supreme Court
against Karnataka CM Siddaramaiah for his a defiant stand before the Supervisory

July 15, 2013: Karnataka and Tamil Nadu clash during the third meeting of the
Cauvery Supervisory Committee here over latters share of the river waters. While
Tamil Nadu sought 34 tmcft in July and 50 tmcft for August to save the Samba crop,
Karnataka says that it had already released 34 tmcft between June and July 13.

September 8, 2013: Chief Minister Jayalalithaa wants the Centre to instruct

Karnataka not to take up any schemes in the Cauvery, including hydro-electric
projects, without the prior consent of Tamil Nadu. Taking exception to the
neighbouring States proposal to build a reservoir across the river at Mekedatu for
generation of hydro-electric power, Jayalalithaa on requests the then Prime Minister
Manmohan Singh to intervene.

January 6, 2014: Justice Chauhan is Chairman of Cauvery Water Disputes

Tribunal. The tribunal had been without a Chairman since April 2012, when Justice
N.P. Singh resigned on health grounds. Justice Singh was appointed a few days
before his superannuation as a Supreme Court judge in December 1996.

July, 2014: The Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal meets in New Delhi to hear
applications filed by the Centre, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Kerala seeking
clarification on the final award it had passed on February 5, 2007, allocating the
quantum of water for each State.

March 30, 2015: Chief Minister Siddaramaiah informs the Legislative Assembly
that the State Government is committed to implementing the Mekedatu dam
project proposed across the Cauvery river in Ramanagaram district.

April 23, 2015: Members of Lok Sabha from Tamil Nadu and Karnataka are
involved in heated exchanges over the issue of Cauvery water sharing. AIADMK
leader P. Venugopal claims that Karnataka is building two reservoirs on river
Cauvery and says the move is against the final award of the Cauvery River Water
Dispute Tribunal. The then Union Minister Ananth Kumar, who hails from
Karnataka, and BJP MP from the State Shobha Karandlaje oppose the AIADMKs

September 6, 2015: Chief Minister Jayalalithaa writes to Prime Minister Narendra

Modi seeking his intervention in the Cauvery issue and requests him to advise the
Karnataka Government to release 27.557 TMC ft. of water that is due to Tamil Nadu
(till the end of August).

September 16, 2015: The Tamil Nadu government shoots off a letter to the
Karnataka government stating that this water year should not be considered as a
distress year in terms of rainfall and is contrary to the factual position.

November 18, 2015: Karnataka objects to Tamil Nadus plea to release Cauvery
water. The Karnataka government tells the Supreme Court that Tamil Nadus
demand for the release of 45.32 tmcft of Cauvery water proceeds from a wholly
erroneous premise that the water year of 2015-16 in the Cauvery basin is a normal
year and not a distress year.

Karnataka says the flows into the Cauvery basin has been drastically less due to the
failure of the south-west monsoon in Karnataka and Kerala this year.

August 16, 2016: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa tells the Legislative
Assembly that she has ordered filing of an interlocutory petition in the Supreme
Court seeking release of Cauvery water as per the final award of the Cauvery Water

September 2, 2016: Urging Karnataka to embrace the principle of live and let
live, the Supreme Court asks the State to consider taking steps to release Cauvery
water to Tamil Nadu to help the State continue to exist as an entity.

September 5, 2016: The Supreme Court directs the Karnataka government to

release 15,000 cusecs of Cauvery water per day to Tamil Nadu for the next 10 days to
ameliorate the plight of farmers. Noting that the samba crops in Tamil Nadu will be
adversely affected, a Bench comprising Justices Dipak Misra and U.U. Lalit
directs Karnataka to ensure supply of water to Tamil Nadu.

September 7, 2016: Karnataka begins releasing Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu from
as per the Supreme Court order, even as protests against the decision continue to
disrupt inter-State movement.
September 11, 2016: Succumbing to political pressure and the wave of public
protests, the Karnataka government files a plea to modify a Supreme Court
order directing it to share Cauvery water with distressed neighbour Tamil Nadu.

September 12, 2016: In a stern message asking people in Karnataka and Tamil
Nadu to behave, the Supreme Court refuses a plea by the Siddaramiah government
to freeze the September 5 order. The court, however, reduces the quantum of daily
water release ordered earlier, from 15,000 cusecs to 12,000 cusecs.

September 12, 2016: One person dies and four are injured in police firing. Mobs
attack businesses with Tamil names. Curfew is imposed in seven police station limits
of Bengaluru. The violence virtually paralyses the Bengaluru-Mysuru highway.
Prohibitory orders under Section 144 are imposed in Bengaluru and Mysuru, areas
around four reservoirs in the Cauvery basin, and Pandavapura in Mandya district.

September 19, 2016: A technical body, empowered by the Supreme Court, slashes
by three-fourths the quantum of Cauvery water that Karnataka is required to release
downstream between September 21 and September 30. The Cauvery Supervisory
Committee (CSC) orders Karnataka to release 3,000 cubic feet of water per second
(cusecs) for the rest of the month.

September 20, 2016: A technical body, empowered by the Supreme Court, has
slashed by three fourths the quantum of Cauvery water that Karnataka is required to
release downstream between September 21 and September 30 but has failed to get
Karnataka and Tamil Nadu closer to a lasting solution over the water-sharing

September 21, 2016: The Supreme Court on Tuesday directed Karnataka to

release 6000 cusecs of Cauvery water per day to neighbouring Tamil Nadu. A Bench
led by Justice Dipak Misra directed Karnataka to release this amount from its
reservoirs for the period between September 21 to September 27, the next date of
hearing in the Supreme Court.

September 22, 2016: Armed with a consensus from major political parties in the
State, the Karnataka Cabinet seems set for a confrontation with the Supreme Court.
It began preparations to defy the Supreme Court directive on Tuesday to release
6,000 cusecs of Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu.

September 23, 2016: All political parties in Karnataka back move by

Siddaramaiah to defy the order of the Supreme Court.