Members of TTV Dhinakaran’s newly launched party Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam launched a hunger strike on Sunday, demanding constitution of the Cauvery Management Board as soon as possible. Dhinakaran, who launched the party on March 15 after being expelled from the AIADMK last year, was also present at the sit-in and paid tributes to former chief minister Jayalalithaa and MGR before beginning the strike.
Both AIADMK and DMK, have been unified in their demand for setting up of the Cauvery river board and have taken their protests to the Parliament, holding up normal functioning of the House. While the DMK has gone a step ahead and demanded a no-confidence motion in the Parliament to pressure the Centre, AIADMK, which has been hobnobbing with the BJP, decided to take a “wait and watch” approach.
After decades of conflict between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu over sharing of Cauvery water, the Supreme Court in February increased Karnataka’s share of Cauvery water by 14.75 thousand million cubic feet (tmc) and directed putting in place “a scheme under Section 6A of Inter-State Water Dispute Act” to oversee water distribution among states in six weeks.
Following the judgment, the state government has been demanding that the Centre to immediately constitute the Cauvery Water Management Board (CWMB) and Cauvery Water Regulation Committee (CWRC). The apex court’s six-week deadline ends on March 29. Karnataka has traditionally opposed setting up of a Cauvery board over fears of losing control over the water.