'Karnataka ask details about Hogenakkal project'

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Bangalore, Aug 12: Karnataka on Tuesday, Aug 12 complained against Tamil Nadu for moving ahead with the controversial Hogenakkal project. Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa said "A joint survey is very much required. I told the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister that without permission it (Tamil Nadu) cannot start (the project)." He also accused Maharashtra of creating hardships in border areas by releasing excess water from Koyna dam. The Karnataka Irrigation Minister was in touch with his counterpart in Tamil Nadu, he said.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi had recently said the project was proceeding on schedule and stressed that there was no need for the state to write either to the Centre or to the Karnataka government on implementing the Hogenakkal project. The Rs 1,334-crore project envisages water supply to 40.4 lakh people in Dharmapuri and Krishnagiri districts of Tamil Nadu. With his state facing some disputes with neighbouring states, Yeddyurappa said he had requested Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to convene a meeting of chief ministers of neighbouring states to resolve them. The Chief Minister, who was here to finalise the state's annual plan for 2008-09, said he had requested the Planning Commission to help Karanataka in carrying out irrigation projects on the Cauvery basin in the plan package without any condition.

Asked to specify the projects on the Cauvery basin, he said even for minor irrigation projects like filing up tanks, the state had to refer them to the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal.

Noting that Maharashtra was releasing 2.2 lakh cusecs of water from Koyna dam without prior notice, Yuddyurappa said he had requested his Maharashtra counterpart to ensure gradual release of water in order minimise flood damage in Karnataka.

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