Cauvery Verdict: 6 Articles to Contextualise the Water War

On 16 February 2018, the Supreme Court lowered the amount of Cauvery water due to Tamil Nadu, to 404.25 tmcft (thousand million cubic feet), from the 419 tmcft allotted by the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal in February 2007. The Court allotted Karnataka 270 tmcft of Cauvery water, which is 14.75 tmcft more than the Tribunal award. 

Through our archives, we trace an outline of the dispute.


Cauvery Dispute: Voice of Sanity | Ramaswamy R Iyer

As far back in 1993, Ramaswamy R Iyer wrote that the two state governments have generated strong chauvinistic sentiments among the general public, which tend to limit their own negotiating freedom and flexibility. [Out of Paywall]


Interstate Water Disputes: Perils and Prospects of Democratisation | Srinivas Chokkakula

How does politics play a part in shaping such disputes and set limits on our responses to them through legal means? Srinivas Chokkakula looked at the 2012-13 escalation in the Cauvery river water dispute in this article. 


Notes on Ambedkar's Water Resources Policies | P Aabraham

In 2002, P Aabraham wrote that, in the context of the Cauvery imbroglio, policies and plans initiated under B R Ambedkar when he was member, labour, irrigation and power in the executive council of the viceroy may offer workable solutions to inter-state river water disputes.


Cauvery Dispute: Politics of Wrong Sort | Editorial

How did the technological aspects of river-sharing intersect with political agendas regarding the dispute? A 2002 editorial reflects.


Cauvery Dispute: Sharing Deficits | Editorial

Another 2002 editorial explores the many ambiguities and lack of transparency in the Cauvery River Authority’s functioning.


The Cauvery Water Dispute: Need for a Rethink | S Janakarajan

S Janakarajan posed a series of questions with particular reference to the basin management of the Cauvery. Do governments make conscious efforts to protect the commons, the environment and ecosystems? Is there any plan for accounting for environmental degradation? Is there any plan for accounting for ecosystem losses? He concluded that we need long-term comprehensive adaptive strategies for basin management in order to protect the livelihoods of millions, and the environment.


Governing Water to Foster Equity and Conservation: Need for New Legal Instruments | Philippe Cullet

Writing about water conservation in general, Philippe Cullet, argues there is a dire need for change in the regulatory framework that governs water. How have changes in water availability, distribution,  and in water use, stretched the existing legal and institutional framework?


Read More

Cauvery, Courts and Some Larger Questions | Aug, 2002

Cauvery Dispute:A Dialogue between Farmers | Jun, 2003

Pricing of Irrigation Water in Cauvery Basin | Oct, 2003

Cauvery Award | Feb, 2007

Piped Water Supply to Greater Bangalore: Putting the Cart before the Horse? | Aug, 2009








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