Cauvery Dispute | GS Paper 1 | Geography

Cauvery Dispute | GS Paper 1 | Geography

Cauvery Dispute

In  NEWS : The  Cauvery Water Management Authority CWMA’s directive commanded Karnataka to maintain the discharge of 5,000 cusecs of water to Tamil Nadu for an additional 15 days. Though officials have declared that there is an insufficient water supply available for this release.



Cauvery , rises in Brahmgiri range of Western Ghat, length up to 800 KM, Area of river basin is 87900 sq. km and lies in Karnataka , Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Maharashtra.

Left Bank tributaries: Herangi, Hemavati, Shimsha, Arkavati

Right Bank tributaries: Kabani, Bhavani and Amravati etc.



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The Supreme Court asked Karnataka to continue releasing 5,000 cubic feet per second (cusecs) of water from the Cauvery River to Tamil Nadu for 15 days, on September 21.

  • Karnataka informed the Supreme Court that the daily flow of 5,000 cusecs of water to Tamil Nadu was against their interest. Specifically in urban areas like Bengaluru, was on “the brink of a drinking water crisis”.
  • Tamil Nadu is in need of water for at least three lakh acres over which a short-term crop (kuruvai) has been raised. Already, there are reports of the crop being at risk of withering in many places.

Cauvery Dispute


Sharing Cauvery Water:

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  • The Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal (CWDT)’s final award of 2007 and the judgment given by SC on February 2018 spell out the system for sharing the river water.SC indicated 740 thousand million cubic feet (TMC ft) of water would be available in the Cauvery basin in a normal year.

Supreme  Court, which broadly adhered to the CWDT’s award, made the allocation for constituents of the basin as follows:

  • Karnataka (284.75 tmc ft); Tamil Nadu (404.25 TMC ft); Kerala (30 TMC ft) and Puducherry (7 TMC ft). 10 TMC ft and 4 TMC ft have been set apart for environmental protection and inevitable escapades into the sea.

 Karnataka’s farmers agitated

  • This year southwest monsoon has played truant, specifically in south interior Karnataka, the region where the Cauvery River originates.
  • The region suffered a deficit rainfall of 27%, according to the India Meteorological Department, In between June 1 and September 23.

Kodagu of Karnataka and Wayanad of Kerala, which form part of the catchment of the Cauvery and its tributary, Kabini, registered a deficit rainfall of 43% and 56% respectively.

  • Karnataka, in its application before Court, had stated that at the reservoir level, which covers a part of the catchment, the shortfall is 53.42%,” given the fact that the State has four reservoirs in the Cauvery basin.

Crucial situation in Tamil Nadu


Tamil Nadu is lying in the lower riparian region in the Cauvery basin  and  this region is majorly dependent on released water by Karnataka.Mainly  during the southwest monsoon, as it falls under the rain shadow region in the season.

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