Tearing into Karnataka for treating the Supreme Court orders on release of Cauvery water with "utter contempt", Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa on Thursday said such "deliberate defiance" goes against the spirit of the Constitution and amounts to "contempt" of the Court.
In her speech, read out by Chief Secretary P Ramamohana Rao, at the meeting of the Chief Ministers of two states convened by the Water Resources Ministry, she said her state has "scrupulously" adhered to every Apex Court order.
"By contrast, the State of Karnataka has treated the orders of the Supreme Court with utter contempt. Successive orders of the Supreme Court have been deliberately and systematically defied," by the neighbouring state, she said.
Jayalalithaa, recuperating at a corporate hospital, said she could not attend the meeting as she was hospitalised. She said she participated in the discussions "with the hope Tamil Nadu would get its legitimate share in Cauvery water".
The Chief Minister said that as of August 31, 2016, Tamil Nadu had a shortfall of 60.983 tmc ft of water as per the final order of the Cauvery water disputes tribunal. It was in this context of such a "huge shortfall" and with the intention of saving at least a single samba crop in the Cauvery delta that her state was "forced" to approach Supreme Court for interim directions, she said.
She recalled the Apex Court directions to Karnataka to initially release 15,000 cusecs and later modify it to 12,000 cusecs per day up to September 20, totalling 17.366 tmc ft. "But "Karnataka failed to release the requisite quantity of water," she said.