Chennai, Apr 8: The Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK) chief, Vaiko, staged a protest here on Monday demanding implementation of the Hogenakkal water project.
"Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi has betrayed Tamil Nadu in this issue of Hogenakkal drinking water project to appease the Congress high command. He has compromised and sacrificed the life interest of Tamil Nadu for his personal, party political gains," Vaiko said. "The project should be implemented, there should not be any adjournment or postponement. That is our stand," Vaiko added.
Hundreds of MDMK supporters carried placards and shouted slogans against the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) Government.
On April 5, Karunanidhi put the Hogenakkal water project on hold till after the upcoming Assembly Elections in Karnataka.
The development came after senior Congress leader and former Karnataka Chief Minister SM Krishna said that the state government was ready to move the Supreme Court on the Hogenakkal issue if need arises.
Earlier, Tamil film star Rajnikanth launched an intense attack on his native Karnataka by condemning the assault on Tamils by pro-Kannada outfits over the Hogenakkal project on the Cauvery river.
The Tamil film personalities conveyed their support to the State Government for the ongoing dispute with the Karnataka Government over the project.
Earlier, Krishna and Union Shipping Minister T.R Baalu met Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh separately to seek the Central Government's intervention on the issue.
Krishna urged the Prime Minister to convince the Tamil Nadu Government to postpone operationalisation of the project till the ensuing polls in Karnataka.
Baalu, on the other hand, said Karnataka should have no objection to the drinking water project that is coming up on Tamil Nadu's border with Karnataka.
He also claimed that the Centre had given a no-objection certificate to the project as far back as 1998, and described its obstruction by vested interests in Karnataka as deplorable.
A recent statement by Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Karunanidhi over the project undertaken by his government has evoked strong protests in Karnataka.
Krishna alleged that Karunanidhi had used some harsh language against the people of Karnataka. However, Karunanidhi denied this allegation.
The Rs. 1334-crore Hogenakal drinking water project is expected to provide water supply for the people in Dharmapuri and Krishnagiri districts.
Hogenakal, a beautiful natural boundary between the two states is fast becoming an election issue.
The project is located on the 64 kilometres long Palar River, which flows through the thick forest of Chamarajnagar and joins with the Cauvery River. While northern bank belongs to Tamilnadu, the southern bank falls in Karnataka.