The Goa government today accused Karnataka of resuming construction of a canal on a tributary of the Mahadeyi river in "total disregard" for the Supreme Court directives. The Goa government said that it has photographs to prove its claim that the neighbouring state has violated the court orders. Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar directed state Chief Secretary Dharmendra Sharma to write a letter to the Karnataka government, asking it to stop the construction work. "As directed by the chief minister, Goa chief secretary is writing a letter to the chief secretary of Karnataka to immediately stop the work of bund (canal) at Kalsa tributary).
The copy of which would be given to the media tomorrow," the communication from Chief Minister's Office (CMO) said. State Water Resources Department Minister Vinod Palyekar said the inspection conducted by the team of officials from his department confirmed that Karnataka has resumed the work on constructing the canal on a Mahadeyi tributary at Kankumbi. "Karnataka has started the construction of a head regulator and allied work on the Kalsa nallah in total disregard of the orders for the Mahadeyi Water Dispute Tribunal and the Supreme Court directives," he told reporters here. "I have photographs to prove the claim that Karnataka has violated the court order," he said. "The government of Goa is seized with the issue and letters will be sent to Karnataka raising the issue. It will also be taken up with the Mahadeyi Tribunal," he added. The Goa government had dispatched a team of officials to the site this morning after a few media reports claimed that the work on the canal has been started by Karnataka. The Centre has formed a tribunal to look into the river- sharing issue between Goa and Karnataka. On Wednesday, Parrikar had said that the ongoing dispute with Karnataka will be fought before the Mahadeyi Water Disputes Tribunal. Last month, Parrikar had written a letter to Karnataka BJP president B S Yeddyurappa, saying that Goa could share the river water with Karnataka for drinking purposes, and expressed his willingness to hold bilateral talks. Parrikar's missive had evoked strong criticism from certain quarters. The letter created a controversy as it was addressed to the BJP leader instead to Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah who represents the state government. The Mahadeyi (called Mandovi in Goa) originates in Karnataka and flows to Goa and Maharashtra. The water-sharing issue is politically sensitive one, especially in five north Karnataka districts. The southern state is going to polls later this year.
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