Updated March 24th, 2024 at 09:30 IST

Karnataka Moves SC Against Centre Seeking Release of NDRF Grants for Drought Relief

Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah-led Karnataka government on Saturday filed a petition in the Supreme Court.

Reported by: Ronit Singh
Karnataka Moves SC Against Centre Seeking Release of NDRF Grants for Drought Relief | Image:PTI/ File Photo
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New Delhi: Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah-led Karnataka government on Saturday filed a petition in the Supreme Court seeking a direction to the Centre to immediately release grants under the National Disaster Response Fund (NDRF) to the state, which is witnessing drought-like conditions.                

Addressing a press conference in Bengaluru, Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah said, "The Karnataka government had waited for a long time and now inevitably we (state government) have filed a petition in the Supreme Court against the Central government. Centre should immediately release the NDRF fund."

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"The central government has committed a law violation, for which we have gone to the Supreme Court," he added.

He further said that 48 lakh hectares of agricultural crops have been damaged in Karnataka due to drought and a total of three memorandums to the Centre had been sent for drought relief. Siddharamiah questioned the 'delay and inaction' of the Centre in this matter."

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After we gave the memorandum, the Central government team came to the state. The team has given a report to Centre about the situation in the state. After receiving this report, they had to take a decision regarding the release of compensation within one month as per law. They have given the report on October 20 last year. After that, our revenue minister and two other ministers went to Delhi to meet the central leaders. They didn't even give a time slot to meet them. There was delay and inaction on the matter," the Chief Minister said.

Siddaramaiah further mentioned that the situation has not changed even after meeting Home Minister Amit Shah and Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

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"On December 19, we met the PM and explained to him the drought situation in Karnataka. Then we met Home Minister Amit Shah also and explained to him the situation of Karnataka. Then the PM had come to Karnataka, I reminded him of the situation again. But till now nothing has changed," he said.

Claiming that "not even a single rupee has come in from Centre" to tackle the drought situation in Karnataka, Siddharamiah said that the state government have released Rs 870 crore to tackle the drought problems.

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"We have Rs 800 crore remaining to address the problem," Chief Minister Siddharamiah said while adding that out of 240 taluks, 220 taluks are drought declared. The state is facing a severe water crisis, with drought-like conditions resulting in a dip in reservoir levels.

Karnataka's capital, Bengaluru, is grappling with a shortage of 500 million litres per day (MLD).

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The current requirement for drinking water as well as commercial use in Bengaluru is 2,600 MLD, of which 1,450 MLD is being pumped from the Cauvery River and about 650 MLD is available from borewells, leading to a shortage of 500 MLD water in the city. 

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Published March 24th, 2024 at 09:30 IST