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Karnataka’s Mhadei case weakened Goa

Karnataka’s Mhadei case weakened Goa

17 May 2017 No comment 37 hits

Panaji: The ongoing tussle between Goa, Maharashtra and Karnataka over sharing of River Mhadei's water has taken another turn, with the state's legal team claiming an upper hand after Wednesday's hearing. The current round of hearings commenced on May 11 and are likely to conclude by May 26.

Officials of water resources department and the legal and technical teams of Goa, present at New Delhi for the Mhadei water disputes tribunal hearing said that Karnataka's case was weakened after their prime witness A K Gosain failed to prove his study on the quantum of water flowing in the river at Wednesday's hearing.

"Their witness was grilled for over six hours in a stretch by additional solicitor general Atamaram Nadkarni and most of his claims have been found false," minister for water resources Vinod Palyekar told REPORTERS from Delhi. He was present during the hearing and will hold a review meeting with the legal team in the coming days.

Additional chief engineer, water resources department, P J Kamat told REPORTERS that during the cross-examination Gosain's answers were evasive and indirect. "Even to our direct questions where he had to reply in yes or no, he did not do so. He had filed an affidavit on the basis of his study on the quantum of water available in the river. He has not been able to prove it during the cross examination and that has been noted by the judges as well," Kamat said, adding that of the several topics in the Mhadei water disputes issue, "the current round of hearing is about the quantum of water available in the river".

There will be four to five days of cross examining where the tribunal will also ask its questions Kamat said, adding that Goa's witness Chetan Pandit has already been cross examined.

Palyekar said that he will be meeting Union minister for water resources Uma Bharati on Wednesday to discuss the matter of extending the tribunal's tenure, which expires in August 2017.

For the current debate, the Karnataka government has two witnesses whereas Maharashtra and Goa have one each. Following the conclusion on the quantum of water available in the river, the tribunal will take up other topics of contention such as forest and wildlife.

Source: Karnataka’s Mhadei case weakened Goa

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